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Aintree

  • 15:40 John Smith's Topham Chase 2m 5f 110y

  • (Grade 3 Handicap) (National Course) £100,000 added 5yo+ 26 ran
  • Winner £56,270 2nd £21,200 3rd £10,610 4th £5,300
  • Going: Good, Good to Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 5m 26.10s
  • Off time: 15:40:17

Always Waining makes history

Bowen star wins third Topham in a row

Last Updated: 13/04/12 5:00pm

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Always Waining: Topham hero

Always Waining: Topham hero

Always Waining made Aintree history by winning a third successive John Smith's Topham Chase.

Peter Bowen's star never turns up with great form under his belt but comes alive over the Grand National Fences and was never far off the pace here under regular rider Tom O'Brien.

The 11-1 shot hit the front passing the elbow, surging past runner-up Chance Du Roy, and was comfortably clear at the line, winning by over four lengths.

Philip Hobbs' charge was second at 16-1, whilst third went to Fistral Beach (22-1) who travelled well throughout but couldn't pick up late on.

Suzy Smith's mare Aimigayle (12-1) ran a stormer in fourth, with Paradis De Thaix fifth and Minella Theatre in sixth.

Favourite Little Josh ran well from the front but tired late on, whilst Triangular was pulled up before Becher's Brook and Matuhi was the first horse to depart, going at the very first fence.

Reaction

O'Brien said: "He's absolutely amazing. He gives everyone who rides him a great spin around here and I'm delighted with that.

"He hears the crowd and he just takes off. I knew Chance Du Roy would take some passing as I won on him last time.

"It's hard to win big races these days. It's amazing to get a big one on the board."

Bowen said: "This has made our season. Our horses have been coughing and they've not been right for a while.

"We worked him last week and thought he was in real good form. We took him out of the National because of the ground.

"It's some achievement to win three Tophams."

Winning owner Peter Douglas said: "Peter's had such a bad run with his horses, so to bring him here and get out of a rut is fantastic.

"We had a hard choice. We were going to run him in the National as he missed out last year but the ground had gone against him and then we've had drying ground all week.

"Then we are kicking ourselves for not going for it, but this is compensation."

Daryl Jacob, rider of third-placed Fistral Beach, said: "I cruised into it nice enough and got a good jump two out and at the last.

"I thought I had a good chance then Tom O'Brien's horse came fast and wide. I couldn't get past Chance Du Roy for second, but he's run a great race."

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