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CHELTENHAM 15:30

13:3014:1014:5015:3016:1016:5017:30
< 15:30 >

15:30 Tuesday 12 March 2019

UNIBET CHAMPION HURDLE CHALLENGE TROPHY (Grade 1) (1)

Distance : 2m 87y (Old)
Prize : £253,215 Age : 4yo+ Race Type : Hurdle Going : Soft
Race Type : Hurdle
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Pedigree
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Race Reports
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Running Notes
Pos Pos Btn Horse Name Horse Name TFR Tfig Jockey Age Wgt ISP ISP BSP Hi/Lo
Pedigree Jockey & Trainer Trainer (Equip) (OR) (Place) BSP
1 1 M. P. Walsh silk 3. ESPOIR D'ALLEN (FR) 3. ESPOIR D'ALLEN (FR) -24 <
170+
156 M. P. Walsh 5 11-10 16/117 16/117
M. P. Walsh silk bg VOIX DU NORD (FR) - QUADANSE (FR) MAILLE PISTOL (FR) J: M. P. Walsh
T: Gavin Patrick Cromwell, Ireland
Age: 5 Wgt: 11-10
Gavin Patrick Cromwell, Ireland
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was patently much improved, announcing himself with fanfare up in grade after winning all 3 of his previous starts this season, though to just what extent isn't easy to assess, given so many of his rivals clearly failed to give their running, a slightly more cautious view of the form than might otherwise be the case best taken for now, a repeat at Punchestown hopefully providing a clearer measure of just what he achieved and how dominant a force he can be in the 2m hurdling division; patiently ridden, headway 3 out, led on bridle 2 out, quickened clear, impressive.
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2 2 P. Townend silk 15 5. MELON 5. MELON -7 <
147+
133 P. Townend 7 11-10 20/121 20/121
P. Townend silk chg MEDICEAN - NIGHT TEENY PLATINI (GER) J: P. Townend
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
Age: 7 Wgt: 11-10 Eq: (s)
W. P. Mullins, Ireland (s)
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in first-time cheekpieces, finished second at the Festival for the third year running, reviving to a certain extent after a lacklustre campaign, given a more prominent ride, just no match for the winner in the closing stages; led until 2 out, not fluent last, kept on.
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3 3 Adam Wedge silk nk 7. SILVER STREAK (IRE) 7. SILVER STREAK (IRE) +2 <
147
133 Adam Wedge 6 11-10 80/181 80/181
Adam Wedge silk grg DARK ANGEL (IRE) - HAPPY TALK (IRE) HAMAS (IRE) J: Adam Wedge
T: Evan Williams
Age: 6 Wgt: 11-10
Evan Williams
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ran about as well as could have been expected upped in grade, connections' enterprise in running well rewarded; dropped out, headway before 3 out, kept on; he's well established as a smart hurdler, though no better.
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4 4 R. Walsh silk 9. LAURINA (FR) 9. LAURINA (FR) +8 <
137+
123 R. Walsh 6 11-3 5/23.5 5/23.5
R. Walsh silk bm SPANISH MOON (USA) - LAMBOGHINA (GER) ALKALDE (GER) J: R. Walsh
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
Age: 6 Wgt: 11-3
W. P. Mullins, Ireland
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well backed, failed to meet expectations, even if her previous form had an element of style over substance to it; handy, chased leader from fourth, every chance when mistake 3 out, ridden after, no extra before last; she may yet do better, particularly back against her own sex.
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5 5 Davy Russell silk 7 10. VERDANA BLUE (IRE) 10. VERDANA BLUE (IRE) F (82) <
127
113 Davy Russell 7 11-3 33/134 33/134
Davy Russell silk bm GETAWAY (GER) - BLUE GALLERY (IRE) BLUEBIRD (USA) J: Davy Russell
T: Nicky Henderson
Age: 7 Wgt: 11-3
Nicky Henderson
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was well held, doubts about the ground scuppering her chance, her rider keen to handle her as sympathetically as possible; held up, travelled well, still plenty to do before 3 out, some headway before 2 out, no extra straight, not given at all a hard time.
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6 6 J. W. Kennedy silk 6 8. APPLE'S JADE (FR) 8. APPLE'S JADE (FR) +44 <
118
104 J. W. Kennedy 7 11-3 7/42.75f 7/42.75f
J. W. Kennedy silk bm SADDLER MAKER (IRE) - APPLE'S FOR EVER (FR) NIKOS J: J. W. Kennedy
T: Gordon Elliott, Ireland
Age: 7 Wgt: 11-3 Eq: (t)
Gordon Elliott, Ireland (t)
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strong in the betting and the clear pick on this season's form, disappointed in no uncertain terms, just not travelling anything like so well as usual, being taken on for the lead and the track just incidental to a really poor performance; pressed leader, never travelling well, lost place fourth, no threat soon after.
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7 7 David Bass silk 45 4. GLOBAL CITIZEN (IRE) 4. GLOBAL CITIZEN (IRE) +97 <
56
42 David Bass 7 11-10 50/151 50/151
David Bass silk bg ALKAADHEM - LADY WILLMURT (IRE) MANDALUS J: David Bass
T: Ben Pauling
Age: 7 Wgt: 11-10
Ben Pauling
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was out of his depth; in touch until fifth.
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pu pu Nico de Boinville silk 1. BRAIN POWER (IRE) 1. BRAIN POWER (IRE) <
Nico de Boinville 8 11-10 33/134 33/134
Nico de Boinville silk bg KALANISI (IRE) - BLONDE AMBITION (IRE) OLD VIC J: Nico de Boinville
T: Nicky Henderson
Age: 8 Wgt: 11-10 Eq: (s)
Nicky Henderson (s)
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ran no sort of race after 13 weeks off, such a performance no real surprise given his overall record, his trainer's excuse about the ground not holding water; held up, never a danger.
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F F Barry Geraghty silk 2. BUVEUR D'AIR (FR) 2. BUVEUR D'AIR (FR) <
+
Barry Geraghty 8 11-10 11/43.75 11/43.75
Barry Geraghty silk bg CRILLON (FR) - HISTORY (FR) ALESSO (USA) J: Barry Geraghty
T: Nicky Henderson
Age: 8 Wgt: 11-10
Nicky Henderson
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ended his bid for a third Champion Hurdle in anti-climactic fashion; in touch, fell third.
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bd bd Mr P. W. Mullins silk 6. SHARJAH (FR) 6. SHARJAH (FR) <
+
Mr P. W. Mullins 6 11-10 20/121 20/121
Mr P. W. Mullins silk bg DOCTOR DINO (FR) - SAARYEH ROYAL ACADEMY (USA) J: Mr P. W. Mullins
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
Age: 6 Wgt: 11-10
W. P. Mullins, Ireland
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failed to complete, through no fault of his own; held up, brought down third.
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All 10 ran. Hurdles: 8.

Winning Owner: Mr John P. McManus

Time: 3m 59.3s Closing Sectional: (4.10f): 61.10s (97.9%)

Given the widest winning margin in the Champion Hurdle this century, surpassing the 11 lengths by which Rooster Booster won in 2003, Espoir d'Allen's performance is clearly that of a top-class hurdler, yet the race didn't deliver all it promised, none of the trio that dominated the market making the first 3, one falling, one running no race at all and the other just well short of expectations, the lack of depth at the top of the 2m hurdling division continuing to be a cause for concern, particularly with the principals from the Supreme looking more obvious Arkle than Champion Hurdle candidates, the winner at least a 5-y-o, a rare winner for his age group, the first since Katchit in 2008.

ESPOIR D'ALLEN (FR) was patently much improved, announcing himself with fanfare up in grade after winning all 3 of his previous starts this season, though to just what extent isn't easy to assess, given so many of his rivals clearly failed to give their running, a slightly more cautious view of the form than might otherwise be the case best taken for now, a repeat at Punchestown hopefully providing a clearer measure of just what he achieved and how dominant a force he can be in the 2m hurdling division; patiently ridden, headway 3 out, led on bridle 2 out, quickened clear, impressive.

MELON in first-time cheekpieces, finished second at the Festival for the third year running, reviving to a certain extent after a lacklustre campaign, given a more prominent ride, just no match for the winner in the closing stages; led until 2 out, not fluent last, kept on.

SILVER STREAK (IRE) ran about as well as could have been expected upped in grade, connections' enterprise in running well rewarded; dropped out, headway before 3 out, kept on; he's well established as a smart hurdler, though no better.

LAURINA (FR) well backed, failed to meet expectations, even if her previous form had an element of style over substance to it; handy, chased leader from fourth, every chance when mistake 3 out, ridden after, no extra before last; she may yet do better, particularly back against her own sex.

VERDANA BLUE (IRE) was well held, doubts about the ground scuppering her chance, her rider keen to handle her as sympathetically as possible; held up, travelled well, still plenty to do before 3 out, some headway before 2 out, no extra straight, not given at all a hard time.

APPLE'S JADE (FR) strong in the betting and the clear pick on this season's form, disappointed in no uncertain terms, just not travelling anything like so well as usual, being taken on for the lead and the track just incidental to a really poor performance; pressed leader, never travelling well, lost place fourth, no threat soon after.

GLOBAL CITIZEN (IRE) was out of his depth; in touch until fifth.

BRAIN POWER (IRE) ran no sort of race after 13 weeks off, such a performance no real surprise given his overall record, his trainer's excuse about the ground not holding water; held up, never a danger.

BUVEUR D'AIR (FR) ended his bid for a third Champion Hurdle in anti-climactic fashion; in touch, fell third.

SHARJAH (FR) failed to complete, through no fault of his own; held up, brought down third.