Champion Hurdle Trophy Races into Sports Auction

One the greatest racehorses of all time will shine in the auction spotlight on Friday when a trophy related to his finest triumph goes under the hammer.

Sea Pigeon, who raced between 1972 and 1981, is a legendary figure in racing circles with the champion hurdler winning 37 of the 85 races he entered. 



At the top of Sea Pigeon’s list of impressive achievements are back to back wins in the Waterford Crystal Champion Hurdle Trophy at Cheltenham in 1980 and 1981.   Now sports fans can own a unique piece of racing heritage as the magnificent crystal trophy awarded for the first of these wins in 1980 goes to auction.

Experts at McTear’s estimate the stunning cup, which is being sold by an anonymous racing enthusiast, could fetch between £5k and £8k at The Sporting Medals & Trophies Auction on 19th July. 



After a defeat to rival Monksfield in 1979, Sea Pigeon won the Champion Hurdle for the first time in 1980, at the age of 10.  Ridden by champion jockey, Jonjo O’Neill,  Sea Pigeon snatched the win from Monksfield in the last seconds to win by seven lengths, with commentator Peter O’Sullevan exclaiming "It's the old man Sea Pigeon, he's won it at last”! 

The 36cm high crystal trophy has a front inscription ‘The Waterford Crystal Champion Hurdle 1980’ and is presented in its original case along with the medal awarded for Sea Pigeon’s victory.  The cup also features a scene depicting a jockey on horseback on the reverse with the words 'Waterford Crystal Champion Hurdle Sea Pigeon March 11th 1980'.  

Commenting on the auction, Brian Clements from Mctear’s said: “Sea Pigeon is a true legend of horse racing and one of the greatest hurdlers of all time, so anything associated with him will always be of interest.  The trophy from the 1980 Champion Hurdle is not only a magnificent item in its own right but is a wonderful piece of sporting history.  We are delighted that it will feature in our Sporting Trophies & Medals Auction and I have no doubt it will attract significant interest.”


The Sporting Medals & Trophies Auction will take place on Friday 19th July at 2.30pm.  

Click to view full auction >>


For a free no obligation auction valuation, please contact Hannah Murphy on 0141 810 2880, or email

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