|Breeder||Pierre de Maleissye Melun|
|Azertyuiop is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Temara by Baby Turk. He was born around 1997 in France, and was bred by Pierre de Maleissye Melun.|
Kingwell Hurdle (2001) |
November Novices' Chase (2002)
Arkle Challenge Trophy (2003)
Game Spirit Chase (2004), (2005)
Queen Mother Champion Chase (2004)
Haldon Gold Cup (2004)
|Horse (Equus ferus caballus)|
|Last updated on October 30, 2007|
Azertyuiop is a top-class 2 mile National Hunt steeplechase horse. He won the Arkle Challenge Trophy at the 2003 Cheltenham Festival, going on to win the Queen Mother Champion Chase the following year,, and then coming home third in the same race in 2005. He was trained by Paul Nicholls and was ridden by Ruby Walsh in every chase bar one. He is owned by John Hales who also owned One Man, who won the 1998 Queen Mother Champion Chase and the 1995 and 1996 King George VI Chase. His name derives from the top row of letters on the French keyboard layout.
Azertyuiop won a hurdle at Auteuil, Paris in October 2000. He then went to Wincanton in February and won the Kingwell Hurdle as a novice. That year's renewal had a slightly substandard look to it. The runner-up Hors La Loi III was in the middle of a poor run of form. Azertyuiop was due to be aimed at the Cheltenham Festival's Triumph Hurdle rather than the Champion Hurdle. However, the 2001 UK foot and mouth crisis ended the hopes of the Festival taking place. In the 2001-02 season he only won one hurdle race, the Elite Hurdle and was well beaten in his other three races. He started the next season as a novice chaser.
Azertyuiop went into the 2003 Arkle Challenge Trophy as a short-priced favourite having won his three novice chases by at least 16 lengths. He won the Arkle by 11 lengths.
In 2003-04 his form was mixed. He unseated Walsh in his first race and then lost to Moscow Flyer in the Tingle Creek Chase. His third race was a defeat to Isio in the Victor Chandler Handicap Chase. However, Azertyuiop was giving away nineteen pounds to the winner and twenty to the others. That he only lost by 1/4 length was a testament to his quality. His Queen Mother Champion Chase prep race was at Newbury in the Game Spirit Chase and he easily won by 12 lengths. The scene was set for a massive battle at Cheltenham with the reigning Champion Chase winner Moscow Flyer. However, the latter made a terrible mistake at the fourth last fence and unseated Barry Geraghty. In the event Azertyuiop won by 9 lengths from the 2002 champion Flagship Uberalles.
In 2004-05 he won his seasonal reappearance and then lost again to Moscow Flyer in the Tingle Creek Chase. His next race was a bold bid by his trainer to win the 3 miles King George VI Chase. In the end his stamina gave out in the latter stages of the race and he finished a creditable third. He then defeated his successor as Arkle Challenge Trophy winner, Well Chief, in retaining the Game Spirit Chase. The scene was set for a titanic battle between him, Moscow Flyer and Well Chief in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. However, he made a very bad mistake at the water jump. Although he battled on to finish third the mistake had ruined any chance of him retaining his crown. He finished the season by finishing second to Well Chief at Sandown in the Betfred Celebration Chase.
Early in the 2005/2006 season he suffered an injury which kept him off the course. Sadly the injury proved to be career ending and Azertyuiop was retired on 8 September 2006.
- ↑ "Azertyuiop takes victory". BBC Sport. March 17, 2004. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/other_sports/horse_racing/3520462.stm. Retrieved 2008-12-16.
- ↑ "Azertyuiop retired due to injury". RTÉ Sport. September 8, 2006. http://www.rte.ie/sport/racing/2006/0908/azertyuiop.html. Retrieved 2008-12-16.