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Cheltenham

  • 15:20 Ladbrokes World Hurdle 3m

  • (Grade 1) £260,000 added 4yo+ 13 ran
  • Winner £148,226 2nd £55,614 3rd £27,846 4th £13,884
  • Going: Good, Good to Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 5m 50.80s
  • Off time: 15:20:34

Full result

15:20 Cheltenham Result 17th March 2011
Pos Draw Dist Horse Weight Jockey Trainer Age SP
1st Big Buck's (FR) 11-10 R Walsh P F Nicholls 8 10/11f
Always prominent, disputed 2nd 3 out, driven to lead between last 2, ridden and hard pressed when rider dropped whip approaching last, edged left flat, stayed on well and in command towards finish opened evs touched evs £500-£400(x2) £2200-£2000 £1100-£1000 £20000-£20000 £15000-£15000 £10000-£10000 £5000-£5000(x5) £2000-£2000(x4) £1500-£1500 £1000-£1000(x7) £800-£800 £500-£500(x5) £909-£1000
2nd Grands Crus (FR) 11-10 T Scudamore D Pipe 6 7/2
Held up behind, headway 2 out, ridden to challenge approaching last, kept on and every chance until no extra and held towards finish opened 7/2 touched 4/1 £4800-£1200 £4000-£1000
3rd Mourad (IRE) 11-10 P Townend W P Mullins 6 8/1
Held up in touch, headway 2 out, effort and every chance approaching last, ridden and kept on to chase leading pair flat, no impression opened 8/1 touched 8/1 £24000-£3000 £4500-£500 £5100-£600
4th ½ Cross Kennon (IRE) 11-10 A O'keeffe Jennie Candlish 7 50/1
Led, ridden 2 out, headed between last 2, kept on under pressure flat opened 40/1 touched 50/1
5th ½ Rigour Back Bob (IRE) 11-10 Andrew J McNamara E J O'Grady 6 80/1
Mid-division on inside, outpaced 2 out, son ridden, stayed on to chase leaders approaching last, kept on flat, no impression opened 100/1 touched 100/1 £60000-£400
6th Berties Dream (IRE) 11-10 A E Lynch P J Gilligan 8 50/1
Raced keenly, tracked leader, lost place 3 out, soon outpaced, ridden after next, kept on under pressure flat, no impression opened 50/1 touched 50/1
7th s.h Any Given Day (IRE) 11-10 J M Maguire D McCain Jnr 6 66/1
Held up behind, headway after 3 out, effort on outside next, switched inside and outpaced between last 2, kept on same pace approaching last, no impression opened 66/1 touched 66/1
8th ¾ Fiveforthree (IRE) 11-10 D J Casey W P Mullins 9 12/1
Held up mid-division, switched right and headway 2 out, edged left soon after, ridden and effort between last 2, disputed 3 lengths 3rd when pecked last, weakened flat opened 12/1 touched 12/1
9th ½ Restless Harry 11-10 H Oliver R Dickin 7 40/1
Raced keenly, tracked leaders, disputed 2nd 3 out, outpaced when hampered and lost place after 2 out, no impression approaching last opened 40/1 touched 40/1
10th 6 Powerstation (IRE) 11-10 D N Russell E O'Connell 11 50/1
Held up in touch, headway 3 out, effort to chase leaders when not much room after next, ridden and weakened before last opened 50/1 touched 50/1 £150000-£3000
11th 15 Souffleur 11-10 T J O'Brien P Bowen 8 100/1
Held up behind, mistake 7th, outpaced 2 out, never on terms opened 100/1 touched 100/1
12th ¾ Zaynar (FR) 11-10 B J Geraghty N J Henderson 6 12/1
In touch on outside, reminders after 6th, ridden and outpaced on outside 2 out, soon weakened opened 16/1 touched 16/1
13th 30 Ashkazar (FR) 11-10 Timmy Murphy D Pipe 7 22/1
Tracked leaders on inside, not much room and hampered after 4 out, soon lost place and behind, weakened before last, tailed off opened 33/1 touched 33/1 £40000-£1000
NR Celestial Halo (IRE) 11-10 Harry Skelton P F Nicholls 7 f

Betting breakdown

Tote Win: £1.80 Tote Place: £1.10,1.90,2.10
Straight Forecast: £3.74 Exacta: £4.50 Trifecta: £11.10 Swingers: 1&2:1.60 2&3:4.70 1&3:3.30

Jackpot: £157,074.84 carried forward to Cheltenham, 18th Mar
Placepot: £219.20, Pool: £902226.06, 3003.34 winning tickets
Quadpot: £25.60, Pool: £38127.21, 1101.17 winning tickets

Verdict

History was made here as BIG BUCK'S became the first horse to win three consecutive World Hurdles. With stablemate Celestial Halo a non-runner due to the ground, there was always a danger that there would be no pace on and that duly occurred. Rather surprisingly Cross Kennon was sent through to lead (at a crawl), and not much happened for the opening two and a half miles. Heading to the top of the hill and the race started to develop, mainly because the leader was a bit hesitant at some of his hurdles. Meanwhile Big Buck's, who had raced in second, third or fourth throughout, jumped so well that he was almost in the lead. As they started to freewheel down the hill, one wondered whether there would be good enough horses to give Nicholls' star a lead for long enough. Ultimately Walsh had to kick on with him, but round the home turn he was being stalked by Grands Crus, Mourad and Fiveforthree. Whilst Cross Kennon rallied gamely, the race developed into a shoot-out between Big Buck's and Grands Crus approaching the last. Ruby Walsh dropped his whip, but that didn't matter as when the winner got a glimpse of his grey rival, he sped away again. If you watched this live, count yourself fortunate, for this was one of the best performances seen over hurdles. If you just watch the video, then you're still pretty lucky. The runner-up is unfortunate in that he has come up against one of the true greats. He settled quite nicely early on considering the slow pace, was then a little keen passing the stands, before creeping into the race under a patient Tom Scudamore. This was a very good run, and the six-year-old's time will undoubtedly come (assuming he stays over hurdles), although you'd have to assume it will be when Big Buck's has moved on. Mourad had every chance turning in, but was made to look a little one-paced by the first two. His form has taken a step up this year since being moved up in trip, and, like Grands Crus, he has many years ahead of him. Cross Kennon is normally held-up, so this was a change of tactics. He was a little keen under restraint around half-way, and his jumping suffered as a result, but he really battled on from the home turn and was unlucky not to pick up a place. He ran a career-best here, although his mark means that future engagements will have to be in this sort of grade rather than handicaps. Rigour Back Bob belied his odds by storming up the hill for a never-nearer fifth. Experts may point to him holding down the form somewhat, and to a point that view have some merit, but it was probably just because the race was so slowly-run that he finished where he did. Berties Dream rallied in the final two furlongs; he could have done with a stronger pace, or perhaps trying to kick on for home a little earlier than he did. Any Given Day was outpaced when the race tempo quickened but he stayed on well up the hill, to finish just ahead of Fiveforthree who travelled well but just found things too hot from the turn-in.