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Catterick

  • 14:35 North Yorkshire Grand National Handicap Chase 3m 6f

  • (For The Denys Smith Challenge Trophy) £20,000 added 5yo+ 9 ran
  • Winner £12,512 2nd £3,696 3rd £1,848 4th £924
  • Going: Heavy, Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 8m 8.60s
  • Off time: 14:35:35

Sun Cloud wins Grand National prize

Last Updated: 09/01/14 3:22pm

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Malcolm Jefferson: Delighted to win the North Yorkshire Grand National

Malcolm Jefferson: Delighted to win the North Yorkshire Grand National

Sun Cloud stayed on dourly to claim an attritional North Yorkshire Grand National at Catterick for trainer Malcolm Jefferson and jockey Brian Hughes.

With three miles and six furlongs facing the nine starters, the early gallop was unsurprisingly sedate, with hat-trick-seeking 9/4 favourite Merlin's Wish towards the forefront from the off.

Plenty had cried enough heading out onto the final circuit, but Merlin's Wish remained in the mix, as did 2010 Hennessy Gold Cup hero Diamond Harry.

But Sun Cloud (4/1) travelled the best of the leading pack rounding the home turn and began to extend clear.

Merlin's Wish was under pressure some way from home, but gamely stuck to his task to fill the runner-up spot, beaten 11 lengths.

Diamond Harry was still in with a chance when taking a heavy fall at the second-last. He lay winded on the turf for a while, but got to his feet and received light applause from racegoers as he trotted by the grandstand on his way back to the racecourse stables.

Jefferson said: "That was grand. He travelled grand and his jumping has got an awful lot better as he was a bit stupid when he first started.

"Brian said he was jumping out of his hands the whole way. I thought the handicapper had been a bit harsh putting him up 10lb for his last win as it wasn't a good race, but he's done it well.

"Classic Capers was called the winner of this race a few years ago (2007) and it turned out he'd got done by a short head. The judge saw the photo and had to change his mind.

"According To Pete got caught right on the line (in 2011) as well, so I'm glad to finally win the race."

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