The Best Jump Horses Of All Time - (N - Z)

Features | 15th November 2022

When jumping fans come together to argue the case for their favourites, there are mentions for
more horses than could possibly fit in the alphabet.

We’ve come up with an A to Z of great jumpers. 

N – Night Nurse

In a golden age of hurdling, Night Nurse was the best. In landing the Champion Hurdle for the second time in 1977 he saw off other hurdling greats in Sea Pigeon and Monksfield. Peter Easterby’s star was given Timeform’s highest ever rating for a hurdler and he was also runner-up behind stablemate in the Gold Cup after to switching to fences.

O – One Man

There were few finer sights in racing than One Man in full flight. Reminiscent of Desert Orchid, this snowy white grey was a fabulous jumper and never better than when twice winning the King George in the mid-1990s. His stamina wasn’t quite up to the Gold Cup test, so he dropped back to two miles for the Champion Chase and secured his Cheltenham Festival victory.

P – Persian War

One of the great hurdlers who managed to win three consecutive Champion Hurdles despite the meddling of his owner. Henry Alper bought him for a record £9,000 three months before he won the 1968 Triumph Hurdle. He went on to become one of the great hurdlers despite Alper moving him around so often he had six different trainers

Q – Quevega

There are few certainties at the Cheltenham Festival but Quevega could always be relied upon. She won the Mares’ Hurdle for Willie Mullins six times from 2009 – often on her first run of the season. On four occasions she followed up in the World Series Hurdle at Punchestown and she is remembered as an outstanding mare.

R – Red Rum

Almost as famous as the Grand National itself. Trained by Ginger McCain and stabled behind his second-hand car lot in Southport, Red Rum won three Nationals in the 1970s and was runner-up in another two. There might not even be a Grand National if it wasn’t for Red Rum as his exploits helped save the race when Aintree was under-threat from developers.

S – Sprinter Sacre

Quite possibly the greatest two-mile chaser. His high-cruising speed and awesome jumping made him almost unbeatable after switching to fences in 2011. A heart problem stopped his progress but he recovered to win a second Champion Chase in an extraordinary feat of training by Nicky Henderson.

T – Tiger Roll

The first dual winner of the Grand National since Red Rum. He was stopped from a crack at matching the greatest National hero when the race was cancelled due to covid. One of the few horses to have won five Cheltenham Festival races having landed the Triumph Hurdle, National Hunt Chase and three Cross Country Chases.

U – Un De Sceaux

Locked horns with both Sprinter Sacre and Altior during a superb career. Despite coming up against two of the greats, Willie Mullins’ star chaser still managed to win 10 Grade 1 prizes. At his best when bowling along in front, he won the Arkle Chase, Ryanair Chase and the Tingle Creek before retiring in 2020 as a 12-year-old.

V – Viking Flagship

There has been few tougher chasers than Viking Flagship. His battles with Deep Sensation and Travado are the stuff of racing legend. The pick of his wins were his two Champion Chases and a Tingle Creek, all secured with his never-say-die attitude.

W – Willie Wumpkins

A true Cheltenham Festival legend. He won the Ballymore Novices Hurdle in 1973 but he will be best remembered for his three victories in what is now the Pertemps Final. Amateur jockey Jim Wilson was on board for all three wins in that three-mile hurdle contest.

X – Xenophon

Sneaks into the list due to there being few horses starting with the letter X. He landed huge gambles in two of the most competitive hurdle races of the season. His win in Leopardstown’s Pierse Hurdle was followed by victory in the Coral Cup at the Cheltenham Festival to cement Tony Martin’s reputation as one of the shrewdest trainers.

Y – Young Kenny

Might not have been the classiest chaser but when it came to lugging huge weights in staying handicaps there were few better than Young Kenny. He overcame hefty burdens to win the Midlands National, Scottish National and Becher Chase around the turn of the millennium.

Z – Zarkandar

The last on our list and makes the cut on the remarkable start to his hurdles career. Having run three times on the Flat in France he joined Paul Nicholls as a juvenile and landed the Grade 2 Adonis Hurdle at Kempton on his debut before winning the Triumph Hurdle less than three weeks later. Went on to win Grade 1 prizes in Britain and France later in his career but it was as a four-year-old he was most impressive.

Let us know on social media whether you agree with our selections and check out the letter’s A-M here if you missed it too. 

You can watch the modern greats in Jump Racing across Great Britain, check out fixtures near you here.