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Shishkin Horse - Age, weight, trainer, owner, race record and form

Two-time Cheltenham Festival winner Shishkin has endured something of a nightmare season to date, though not always of his own volition.

He showcased his temperamental nature by refusing to jump off on his intended comeback at Ascot in November, but he has since had a rollercoaster time.

Shishkin has missed targets owing to unsuitable conditions, unseated Nico de Boinville with the King George at his mercy, won the Denman Chase at Newbury and then missed the Cheltenham Gold Cup as a bug infiltrated trainer Nicky Henderson's Seven Barrows team.

Shishkin Owner

Shishkin's owners are Joe and Marie Donnelly, who bought him in the Tattersalls December sales in 2018 for a price of £170,000.

He had been owned originally by Ben Case, who purchased him for €40,000, before being sold to Boyne Farm for €28,000, who subsequently sold Shishkin on for a huge profit.

Shishkin Trainer

Shishkin started in point-to-points for Virginia Considine very briefly before his sale to the Donnelly's, who swiftly sent him to four-time champion trainer Nicky Henderson, in whose care he has spent all of his racing career under Rules.

Henderson began training in 1978 at his Seven Barrows yard in Lambourn, Berkshire, where he has operated ever since.

He is regarded as one of the sport's best-ever trainers, having been responsible for 73 Cheltenham Festival winners and countless other big successes at various tracks in the UK and Ireland.

Horse Racing

Shishkin Age

Shishkin is now 10, having made his debut as a four-year-old back in 2018. 

While that does mean he is nearing the twilight stages of his glittering career, Henderson was buoyed by his two most recent runs and he was viewed as a leading Gold Cup contender prior to being withdrawn on account of the poor performances of a string of his stablemates in the Cotswolds.

Shishkin Official Rating

Shishkin’s Chase rating is now 173, which has been his mark ever since a second-placed effort in the Ryanair Chase at last year’s Cheltenham Festival.

He was deemed to have run to that level in his Denman Chase win at Newbury in February, when he had subsequent Ryanair winner Protektorat behind in third. Arguably, had he not unseated his rider late in the King George on Boxing Day, he may well have run a career-best in the Kempton showpiece.

His best Racing Post Rating was 179, achieved when he fended off subsequent two-time Champion Chase winner Energumene in the Clarence House Chase at Ascot in January 2022 in a real duel for the ages.

Shishkin won all his completed starts over hurdles and attained a rating of 163 for winning the Supreme Novices' at Cheltenham in 2020, the most recent time he has raced over timber.

Shishkin Weight

As Shishkin races only in Graded Races now, his weight has been 11st 10lbs for all of his recent efforts. However, he was dropped to 11st 8lbs for the Denman Chase at Newbury in February, which he won despite carrying top weight.

Shishkin Next Race

After his late withdrawal from Cheltenham, Henderson may be targeting the Grand National Festival at Aintree for Shishkin's next outing, although no confirmation have been made yet. He is unbeaten at the famous Merseyside venue, winning both starts.

Henderson might also consider heading for Punchestown in late April, depending on how long it takes to get his team back firing on all cylinders.

Shishkin Record

Shishkin has been partnered exclusively by Nico de Boinville under Rules and the pair have combined for 12 wins from 18 runs.

After winning a Kempton bumper on debut, their first attempt over obstacles as a duo ended prematurely with a fall at the second hurdle at Newbury in December 2019.

That memory was soon banished as they then went on to win 10 races in a row as Shishkin quickly became one of the biggest names in racing.

That sensational run included wins in both the Supreme Novices' Hurdle and Arkle Novices' Chase at successive Cheltenham Festivals, as well as victories in the Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton and that memorable Clarence House Chase at Ascot.

Shiskin was pulled up in the Queen Mother Champion Chase at the 2022 Festival before finishing third in the Tingle Creek on his reappearance at the end of the same year.

Not one to lie down, he bounced back in the Grade 1 Ascot Chase in February of 2023, beating Pic D'Orhy by 16-lengths, before going on to win the Aintree Bowl in April on his first attempt beyond three-miles having finished second to Envoi Allen in the Ryanair at Cheltenham in between times after an errant round of jumping.

After his refusal to start at Ascot in November, Henderson plotted a run over hurdles in the rearranged Fighting Fifth at Sandown, but the weather scuppered him.

Despite the lack of a prep run, Shishkin looked set to deliver a famous success in the King George at Kempton on Boxing Day, only to part company with De Boinville two fences from home.

He won the Denman Chase at Newbury in February to tee him up for a major spring target at one of the major festivals in Britain or Ireland.

Shishkin Prize Money

Shishkin has won over £736,000 in his career to date, with the majority of those earnings coming via Chase races, while a small portion has come from Hurdle and NH Flat efforts.

Shishkin News

Henderson said Shishkin's misdemeanours meant he was treated like "a criminal just let out of prison" ahead of his Newbury win in February, but stated he was confident he would not repeat his refusal anytime soon.

Indeed, the trainer was moved to suggest that: "He'd have been first or second in the King George, and I honestly think he'd have won it. It was a hell of a performance for his first run of the season and as good a trial as you would've seen. He came out of Newbury really well, and I'd say he's never looked so well."

After being forced to sit out Cheltenham, it now remains to be seen if he can get Shishkin to fire in what is left of the current season.

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