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  • 13:10 Irish Times Amateur Riders' Handicap Chase3m 110y

  • £17,000 added 4yo+ 13 ran
  • Winner £10,193 2nd £3,184 3rd £1,591 4th £796
  • Going: Good; Cross Country Firm-Good to Firm in plcs.
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 6m 10.00s
  • Off time: 13:10:21

Swing Bill opens with win

Gallant grey does the business under Bellamy

Last Updated: 11/11/11 2:08pm

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Swing Bill (left): Opening winner

Swing Bill (left): Opening winner

The first race of The Open meeting at Cheltenham went to trainer David Pipe and owner David Johnson as Swing Bill won the Irish Times Amateur Riders' Handicap Chase.

The distinct grey was ridden with patience by Tom Bellamy and despite making some mistakes down the far side he soon got into contention.

Rounding the final turn it was between two as the winner and Stewarts House pulled clear of the field but two decent leaps at the final two obstacles clinched it for Pipe's charge.

Pipe tweeted afterwards: "Thank you - what a race, horse & jockey - brilliant!"

He told Racing UK: "It was a great ride. It's Tom Bellamy's first ride at Cheltenham so he'll remember that one. He made a few mistakes down the far side but it was a great performance.

"He's a tough customer and he's a young ten. It's a great start to the meeting."

Johnson said: "We knew he was a safe conveyance as he jumps well, but he had a lot of weight and this is a nice surprise.

"It was the jockey's first ride at the course, and that was a great ride."

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