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Newbury

  • 12:10 Betfair Super Saturday Chase 2m 1f

  • (Registered As The Game Spirit Chase) (Grade 2) £30,000 added 5yo+ 6 ran
  • Winner £17,085 2nd £6,411 3rd £3,210 4th £1,599
  • Going: Good to Soft
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 3m 57.80s
  • Off time: 12:12:23

Full result

12:10 Newbury Result 17th February 2012
Pos Draw Dist Horse Weight Jockey Trainer Age SP
1st Sprinter Sacre (FR) 11-5 B J Geraghty N J Henderson 6 2/5f
Jumped well, tracked leaders, took keen hold, went 2nd 5th, led after next, hard held, impressive opened 4/9 touched 4/9
2nd 6 French Opera 11-10 A Tinkler N J Henderson 9 16/1
With leader, led 2nd, not fluent 6th, soon headed, chased winner after, not fluent 7th, ridden approaching 4 out, stayed on to secure 2nd flat, no chance with hard held winner opened 14/1 touched 16/1
3rd I'm So Lucky 11-0 T Scudamore D Pipe 10 22/1
Held up in 5th from 2nd, went 3rd 8th, pressed for 2nd from after 5 out, no chance with winner, 3rd and no extra towards finish opened 18/1 touched 22/1
4th 12 Zaynar (FR) 11-5 J Reveley Nick Williams 7 8/1
Led until 2nd, tracked leaders, outpaced from 5 out, weakened 3 out opened 9/1 touched 9/1
5th 16 Hold Fast (IRE) 11-4 R Walsh P F Nicholls 8 6/1
Tracked leaders, not fluent 4th, mistake next, not fluent 7th, jumped right and ridden next, struggling 9th, weakened 4 out opened 5/1 touched 13/2
6th 73 Kinkeel (IRE) 11-0 Matthew Batchelor A W Carroll 13 250/1
In rear, jumped right and lost touch from 4th, tailed off 9th opened 250/1 touched 250/1

Betting breakdown

Tote Win: £1.20 Tote Place: £1.10,4.30
Straight Forecast: £7.01 Exacta: £4.20 Swingers: 1&2:3.00 2&3:30.30 1&3:1.70

Jackpot: £743.00, Pool: £126494.09, 120.86 winning tickets
Placepot: £19.90, Pool: £112013.42, 4090.53 winning tickets
Quadpot: £16.90, Pool: £8927.02, 390.15 winning tickets

Verdict

A breathtaking display from SPRINTER SACRE, who absolutely laughed at some good-standard rivals and leaves him at no bigger than 11-8 to win next month's Arkle at Cheltenham. He took a fierce grip in the early stages under Barry Geraghty over the first fence but did consent to settle just behind the pace as the field headed down the back straight. But Geraghty gave up the unequal struggle at the sixth as he jumped level with the leaders and then into a clear advantage at the next. He was absolutely running away approaching the cross fence and then proceeded to produce a string of fantastic leaps all the way up the home straight. He never for a moment looked like coming out of second gear as he trounced last year's winner French Opera by six lengths and broke Barnbrook Again's track record in the process. Geraghty admitted after unsaddling that he had never ridden anything like it and it is going to take an awful lot to lower his colours at the Festival. In an ideal world he would drop anchor a little more in the early stages to help his jockey against high-class rivals like Peddlers Cross and Al Ferof but Sprinter Sacre could just be a freak. Time will probably tell that French Opera's attempt to give him five pounds was an impossibility and he ran a very sound first race. He holds an entry in the Ryanair Chase and that looks the next logical step. I'm So Lucky was the only other runner to raise anything like an attempt to go in pursuit of Sprinter Sacre up the home straight and he kept on pretty well for third. He looks below top grade and one of the handicaps at the Festival will be his best route. Zaynar seems to have regained some zest for the game this season but the bottom line remains he is an unpredictable character. His best efforts have come when allowed a clear sight of the front but he was never ever able to lay up with Sprinter Sacre down the back straight. He dropped out of contention from the cross fence and plodded home in his own time. Hold Fast had looked promising after his win at Sandown in early January and although this was tougher, he put in a disappointing display. He was struggling at the cross fence and that was that - he is surely capable of better. Veteran Kinkeel regularly pitches up for these events and the requisite search party was sent out for the old boy but he did complete in sixth.