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  • 13:15 Gala Retail Spring Juvenile Hurdle 2m

  • (Grade 1) (2m) €75,000 added 4yo 6 ran
  • Winner €48,800 2nd €14,300 3rd €6,800 4th €2,300
  • Going: Soft to Heavy
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 3m 50.40s
  • Off time: 13:15:05

Guitar Pete landed a smooth win in the Spring Juvenile Hurdle

Last Updated: 09/02/14 2:18pm

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Guitar Pete wings the last at Leopardstown

Guitar Pete wings the last at Leopardstown

Guitar Pete dented two tall reputations with a smooth win in the Gala Retail Spring Juvenile Hurdle at Leopardstown.

Ivan Grozny and Plinth were expected to advertise their JCB Triumph Hurdle claims in the Grade One contest but neither were ever a factor as Barry Geraghty steered Dessie Hughes' charge to a taking success.

In front turning for home, the son of Dark Angel skipped clear approaching the final flight and the 9/2 winner powered to the line to beat Tiger Roll (16/1).

Plinth was under pressure from some way out but plugged on for third, narrowly ahead of 9/10 market leader Ivan Grozny who folded tamely.

Hughes said: "He's very honest and he loves the trip - he just gallops.

"He will go for the Triumph now he's proved his worth.

"Our Conor may have had a bit more speed, but this lad jumps well and grinds it out.

"He's done everything right since Christmas. The ground was the only thing, but it didn't seem to bother him.

"I couldn't ask for more. There were some good horses in there and it was a true-run race."

Geraghty said he believes Guitar Pete to be an ideal type for the Triumph.

He said: "Dessie does a good job with his juveniles and all of his hurdlers.

"He schools them well and he (Guitar Pete) pinged them down the back and that's what won it for him.

"You need a real stayer for the Triumph now and he's that."

Trainer Gordon Elliott said he hoped there might be more to come from runner-up Tiger Roll.

He said: "I'm very happy with him. If he had jumped the last, he'd have been bang on top of him (Guitar Pete) but probably wouldn't have beat the winner.

"He's a nice horse and there's a fair bit of improvement in him."

The winner was halved in price to 10/1 for the JCB Triumph Hurdle by Sky Bet, spokesman Michael Shinners saying: "The Cheltenham picture doesn't seem to be getting any clearer in the juvenile division but you had to like the way Guitar Peter ran to the line. He's clearly going to be a player in the Triumph."

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