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CHELTENHAM 15:30

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

15:30 Wednesday 13 March 2019

BETWAY QUEEN MOTHER CHAMPION CHASE (Grade 1) (1)

Distance : 1m 7f 199y (Old)
Prize : £225,080 Age : 5yo+ Race Type : Chase Going : Soft
Race Type : Chase
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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 Nico de Boinville silk 1. ALTIOR (IRE) 1. ALTIOR (IRE) +4 <
169+
162 Nico de Boinville 9 11-10 4/111.36f 4/111.36f
Nico de Boinville silk bg HIGH CHAPARRAL (IRE) - MONTE SOLARO (IRE) KEY OF LUCK (USA) J: Nico de Boinville
T: Nicky Henderson
Age: 9 Wgt: 11-10
Nicky Henderson
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wasn't at his best after 8 weeks off, the tacky ground perhaps part of the reason, and he was given a real fright as a result, but overcame it to become the fourth dual Champion Chase winner this century, matching the sequence of 18 successive wins that Big Buck's managed in the process; he tracked Saint Calvados, several lengths clear of the rest, jumping superbly until a mistake at the water, also guessing a touch at the third last prior to hitting the front and not seeing a stride at either of the last 2 fences, pounced upon at the last before quickly rallying to regain the lead and typically finding plenty up the hill to assert in the final 100 yds; even in running below par he showed just why he's so hard to beat and, though the clamour to step him up in trip will remain, a hard race here might put a crack at the Melling Chase in doubt, while the 3m division is far more packed at the top than the 2m one - several very good novices throwing their hats into that particular ring earlier this afternoon too - and it's easy to see him sticking to this sort of trip for a while yet, a possible clash with Cyrname in the Celebration at Sandown likely to be something to savour.
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2 2 Harry Cobden silk 7. POLITOLOGUE (FR) 7. POLITOLOGUE (FR) -15 <
166
159 Harry Cobden 8 11-10 11/112 11/112
Harry Cobden silk grg POLIGLOTE - SCARLET ROW (FR) TURGEON (USA) J: Harry Cobden
T: Paul Nicholls
Age: 8 Wgt: 11-10 Eq: (h+t)
Paul Nicholls (h+t)
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had never been at his best at Cheltenham in the past (beaten 23 lengths in this race the year before) but, back at 2m for the first time this season and with the hood back on, ran right up to the pick of his form having attracted some support, providing a significant boost to Cyrname in the process; he lined up to track the leaders but didn't get away too well, meaning he was settled in mid-division, was close up by the third last and still going well when brushing through the next, brought to challenge at the last and briefly holding every chance but not quite able to match Altior up the hill, still seeing the race out well himself for second; this puts him on the front foot for a repeat bid in the Melling.
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3 3 Daryl Jacob silk 9. SCEAU ROYAL (FR) 9. SCEAU ROYAL (FR) H (141) <
164
157 Daryl Jacob 7 11-10 16/117 16/117
Daryl Jacob silk bg DOCTOR DINO (FR) - SANDSIDE (FR) MARCHAND DE SABLE (USA) J: Daryl Jacob
T: Alan King
Age: 7 Wgt: 11-10
Alan King
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clearly all the better for his tune-up over hurdles, ran a cracker back at Cheltenham, surpassing the level of form that saw him win the Shloer in the autumn, even trading as low as 1.6 in-running as he jumped on at the last and, still a young horse in the context of this race, may yet prove a bigger threat to Altior another day, notwithstanding the winner was plainly below his best; he jumped low and quickly in touch up the inner, made headway on the bridle approaching the home turn and, having been close up over the second last, was produced to lead at the last, understandably not quite as strong as the first pair up the hill but clear of the rest; he could be one for Punchestown.
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4 4 Barry Geraghty silk 6 4. HELL'S KITCHEN 4. HELL'S KITCHEN +6 <
155+
148 Barry Geraghty 8 11-10 25/126 25/126
Barry Geraghty silk bg ROBIN DES CHAMPS (FR) - MILLE ET UNE (FR) TREMPOLINO (USA) J: Barry Geraghty
T: Harry Fry
Age: 8 Wgt: 11-10 Eq: (h+t)
Harry Fry (h+t)
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was up significantly in grade having won a handicap from a BHA mark of 143 when last seen 12 weeks earlier and acquitted himself well, even if not quite able to reproduce his Ascot rating, ridden very differently this time; held up, progress approaching the home turn, went fourth soon after the second last and kept on in the wake of the principals to readily fend off a below-par Min for that position.
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5 5 R. Walsh silk 5. MIN (FR) 5. MIN (FR) +11 <
152+
145 R. Walsh 8 11-10 7/24.5 7/24.5
R. Walsh silk bg WALK IN THE PARK (IRE) - PHEMYKA (FR) SAINT ESTEPHE (FR) J: R. Walsh
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
Age: 8 Wgt: 11-10
W. P. Mullins, Ireland
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seemingly the only legitimate challenger to Altior again having won Grade 1 events on his 2 previous outings this campaign, failed to give his running this time around, no issue immediately coming to light; he was a bit keen under restraint in mid-field with Walsh seemingly keen to delay his challenge, still waiting on the run to the third last, but it was obvious that Min wasn't going that well when he was shuffled back before the home turn and he was held by the second last; the fact that he's been beaten 7 lengths or more on each visit to Cheltenham is mis-representative of his talent.
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6 6 Davy Russell silk 8 2. CASTLEGRACE PADDY (IRE) 2. CASTLEGRACE PADDY (IRE) <
141
134 Davy Russell 8 11-10 25/126 25/126
Davy Russell silk bg FLEMENSFIRTH (USA) - THUNDER ROAD (IRE) MTOTO J: Davy Russell
T: P. A. Fahy, Ireland
Age: 8 Wgt: 11-10
P. A. Fahy, Ireland
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an early faller when last seen, shaped better than the distance beaten suggests, just not getting up the hill for whatever reason; held up, he took a keen hold and nodded at the sixth but crept closer after 3 out and was on the heels of the leaders at the next before wilting.
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7 7 Gavin Sheehan silk 5 8. SAINT CALVADOS (FR) 8. SAINT CALVADOS (FR) +15 <
133+
126 Gavin Sheehan 6 11-10 25/126 25/126
Gavin Sheehan silk bg SAINT DES SAINTS (FR) - LAMORRESE (FR) PISTOLET BLEU (IRE) J: Gavin Sheehan
T: Harry Whittington
Age: 6 Wgt: 11-10 Eq: (s)
Harry Whittington (s)
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was well held in first-time cheekpieces, possibly overdoing things in front though he's been put in his place at Grade 1 level since seeing off Footpad on his return; led, steadied into second, headed soon after 3 out, weakened.
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8 8 Rachael Blackmore silk 10 6. ORDINARY WORLD (IRE) 6. ORDINARY WORLD (IRE) +37 <
118
111 Rachael Blackmore 9 11-10 33/134 33/134
Rachael Blackmore silk brg MILAN - SAUCY PRESENT (IRE) PRESENTING J: Rachael Blackmore
T: Henry de Bromhead, Ireland
Age: 9 Wgt: 11-10
Henry de Bromhead, Ireland
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fared no better than in the race last year, losing touch in the back straight and never a threat.
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pu pu Paddy Brennan silk 3. GOD'S OWN (IRE) 3. GOD'S OWN (IRE) <
+
Paddy Brennan 11 11-10 16/117 16/117
Paddy Brennan silk bg OSCAR (IRE) - DANTES TERM (IRE) PHARDANTE (FR) J: Paddy Brennan
T: Tom George
Age: 11 Wgt: 11-10
Tom George
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after 3 months off, shaped better than being pulled up might suggest running in the race for a fourth time, previously finishing fourth, fifth and third respectively and looking set for one of those minor placings again until pulling up sharply before the last, reportedly lame.
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All 9 ran. Fences: 13. Race Distance Adjustment: +16 yds

Winning Owner: Mrs Patricia Pugh

Time: 3m 59.4s Closing Sectional: (3.75f): 55.50s (101.7%)

The lack of depth in the 2m division - Saint Calvados was the only one in the line-up who'd contested the previous year's Arkle - meant this was largely a re-run of the 2018 renewal, none of the vanquished quartet who were back for more with obvious chances of turning the tables on Altior, and it was left to a second-season chaser who'd been forced to miss last year's Arkle to provide the biggest threat to the holder's crown, Sceau Royal even hitting the front at the last; an interesting tactical battle played out after Saint Calvados and Altior had stolen a march on their rivals at the start, the rest happy to wait in behind, even once Altior had hit the front after the third last, Jacob leaving it as late as he dared on Sceau Royal but even that proved too early; the proximity of the placed horses, as well as Hell's Kitchen in fourth, means it's hard to escape the conclusion that Altior was some way below his best on the day, though he was still recording his fourth Festival success - a feat remarkably matched by Tiger Roll just 40 minutes later.

ALTIOR (IRE) wasn't at his best after 8 weeks off, the tacky ground perhaps part of the reason, and he was given a real fright as a result, but overcame it to become the fourth dual Champion Chase winner this century, matching the sequence of 18 successive wins that Big Buck's managed in the process; he tracked Saint Calvados, several lengths clear of the rest, jumping superbly until a mistake at the water, also guessing a touch at the third last prior to hitting the front and not seeing a stride at either of the last 2 fences, pounced upon at the last before quickly rallying to regain the lead and typically finding plenty up the hill to assert in the final 100 yds; even in running below par he showed just why he's so hard to beat and, though the clamour to step him up in trip will remain, a hard race here might put a crack at the Melling Chase in doubt, while the 3m division is far more packed at the top than the 2m one - several very good novices throwing their hats into that particular ring earlier this afternoon too - and it's easy to see him sticking to this sort of trip for a while yet, a possible clash with Cyrname in the Celebration at Sandown likely to be something to savour.

POLITOLOGUE (FR) had never been at his best at Cheltenham in the past (beaten 23 lengths in this race the year before) but, back at 2m for the first time this season and with the hood back on, ran right up to the pick of his form having attracted some support, providing a significant boost to Cyrname in the process; he lined up to track the leaders but didn't get away too well, meaning he was settled in mid-division, was close up by the third last and still going well when brushing through the next, brought to challenge at the last and briefly holding every chance but not quite able to match Altior up the hill, still seeing the race out well himself for second; this puts him on the front foot for a repeat bid in the Melling.

SCEAU ROYAL (FR) clearly all the better for his tune-up over hurdles, ran a cracker back at Cheltenham, surpassing the level of form that saw him win the Shloer in the autumn, even trading as low as 1.6 in-running as he jumped on at the last and, still a young horse in the context of this race, may yet prove a bigger threat to Altior another day, notwithstanding the winner was plainly below his best; he jumped low and quickly in touch up the inner, made headway on the bridle approaching the home turn and, having been close up over the second last, was produced to lead at the last, understandably not quite as strong as the first pair up the hill but clear of the rest; he could be one for Punchestown.

HELL'S KITCHEN was up significantly in grade having won a handicap from a BHA mark of 143 when last seen 12 weeks earlier and acquitted himself well, even if not quite able to reproduce his Ascot rating, ridden very differently this time; held up, progress approaching the home turn, went fourth soon after the second last and kept on in the wake of the principals to readily fend off a below-par Min for that position.

MIN (FR) seemingly the only legitimate challenger to Altior again having won Grade 1 events on his 2 previous outings this campaign, failed to give his running this time around, no issue immediately coming to light; he was a bit keen under restraint in mid-field with Walsh seemingly keen to delay his challenge, still waiting on the run to the third last, but it was obvious that Min wasn't going that well when he was shuffled back before the home turn and he was held by the second last; the fact that he's been beaten 7 lengths or more on each visit to Cheltenham is mis-representative of his talent.

CASTLEGRACE PADDY (IRE) an early faller when last seen, shaped better than the distance beaten suggests, just not getting up the hill for whatever reason; held up, he took a keen hold and nodded at the sixth but crept closer after 3 out and was on the heels of the leaders at the next before wilting.

SAINT CALVADOS (FR) was well held in first-time cheekpieces, possibly overdoing things in front though he's been put in his place at Grade 1 level since seeing off Footpad on his return; led, steadied into second, headed soon after 3 out, weakened.

ORDINARY WORLD (IRE) fared no better than in the race last year, losing touch in the back straight and never a threat.

GOD'S OWN (IRE) after 3 months off, shaped better than being pulled up might suggest running in the race for a fourth time, previously finishing fourth, fifth and third respectively and looking set for one of those minor placings again until pulling up sharply before the last, reportedly lame.