The Clarence House Chase is a Grade 1 steeplechase over about two miles run at Ascot in January about halfway between the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown Park and the Queen Mother Champion Chase during the Cheltenham Festival in the British National Hunt horse racing programme. Formerly a handicap sponsored by Victor Chandler bookmakers (better known today as BetVictor) from its inauguration in the late 1980s, it achieved its current status in 2007.
The Ascot Clarence House Chase roll of honour includes legendary two-milers Desert Orchid, Viking Flagship, Master Minded, Twist Magic, Sprinter Sacre, Sire De Grugy, Dodging Bullets, Altior and Un De Sceaux. That latter horse won a record three consecutive renewals of the race between 2016 and 2018. From 2019 onwards, it has been run as the Matchbook Clarence House Chase after the online betting exchange took over sponsoring this event from Royal Salute Whisky and regular Ascot partners Sodexo.
As noted above the Clarence House Chase and Ascot are one of the final stepping stones on the road to the Cheltenham for Queen Mother Champion Chase hopefuls. In fact, since 2013, five winners have gone to enjoy success at the Festival and four of those in the big two-mile feature on Ladies Day.
While Un De Sceaux made a successful step up in trip to capture Ryanair Chase glory in 2017, the Matchbook Clarence House Chase has to be regarded as a key Cheltenham trial for the Queen Mother Champion Chase. Altior (2019), Dodging Bullets (2015), Sire Du Grugy (2014) and Sprinter Sacre (2013) all did the double, and it’s clear that whoever wins at Ascot will be cut to do likewise at Cheltenham by the bookies as a result.
A statistic like that should not be lost on you when considering who to bet on come the Festival. There are other Queen Mother Champion Chase trials, including the aforementioned Tingle Creek at Sandown, Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton Park during Christmastime and Game Spirit Chase at Newbury in February, but you should definitely pay attention to the Clarence House Chase 2022 result.
From the 12 early closing entries for the Clarence House Chase 2023, nine have been declared to run. One horse has been supplemented for the race at the penultimate declaration stage. Paul Nicholls, the leading trainer in Clarence House Chase history with five previous victories, is now the only handler with more than one horse entered this year.
As a Grade 1 race in its own right, you can expect to find Clarence House Chase offers from online bookmakers in the run-up to it. From specials combining who will win the Ascot feature and Queen Mother Champion Chase in a double, to best odds guaranteed on the day of the race, distance and match bets, and more, there is something to suit every punter here. Newbies will benefit from generous Cheltenham sign up offers for this or any other race too. Check out the latest Clarence House Chase Ascot offers below:
First Flow put in a career best effort and blew the market principals away in the Clarence House Chase 2021, pulling off a 14/1 shock. Content to take dual Tingle Creek winner and 11/8 favourite Politologue on up front, Kim Bailey’s improving nine-year-old got a brave ride from David Bass. Just two weeks earlier, the jockey fell at Kempton in a Grade 2 when riding one of the stable’s other stars. That was a distant memory here, however, as First Flow found for his rider when asked and went clear on the run-in, scoring by seven lengths. He left his past winning form in handicaps like the Castleford Chase at Wetherby on his last start well and truly behind.
Northern raider Waiting Patiently, supplemented at a cost of £5,000 by trainer Ruth Jefferson, justified his owners’ outlay but not a starting price of 5/2. He just held onto third under champion jockey Brian Hughes by a head from 10/1 shot Fanion D’Estruval from the Venetia Williams stable. That pair were eight lengths clear of the previous Clarence House Chase winner Defi Du Seuil, who again didn’t fire for Philip Hobbs, Richard Johnson and JP McManus at 9/2. Rank outsider Le Patriote and 2019 Arkle winner Duc Des Genievres never got into the race, but at least completed with Bun Doran pulling up. The Clarence House Chase result has blown the Champion Chase ante post market for the Cheltenham Festival wide open.
Jamie Clark has been around horse racing and betting his entire life. His father and godfather ran a trackside bookmaker’s pitch at Market Rasen Racecourse in Lincolnshire for many years. Jamie was Sports Editor for Coral’s digital platforms between 2014 and 2017, and has since become a successful freelancer.