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Leopardstown

  • 15:50 Hennessy Gold Cup 3m

  • (Grade 1) (3m) €160,000 added 5yo+ 7 ran
  • Winner €92,000 2nd €30,400 3rd €14,400 4th €4,800
  • Going: Soft to Heavy
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 6m 26.70s
  • Off time: 15:50:13

Full result

15:50 Leopardstown Result 9th February 2014
Pos Draw Dist Horse Weight Jockey Trainer Age SP
1st Last Instalment (IRE) 11-10 B T O'Connell P Fenton 9 8/1
Prominent and led from 2nd, asserted approaching straight, stayed on well run-in opened 7/1 touched 8/1
2nd Tidal Bay (IRE) 11-10 R Walsh P F Nicholls 13 5/2
Tracked leaders, 2nd briefly before 10th, ridden and dropped to rear 3 out, under pressure and no impression in 6th entering straight, kept on run-in to go moderate 2nd close home opened 5/2 touched 5/2
3rd ½ First Lieutenant (IRE) 11-10 B J Cooper M F Morris 9 7/4f
Tracked leaders, 5th halfway, 3rd 2 out, ridden in 2nd and no impression on winner entering straight, under pressure and kept on one pace, no extra run-in and dropped to 3rd close home opened 9/4 touched 9/4
4th ½ Texas Jack (IRE) 11-10 P Carberry N Meade 8 14/1
Held up in rear, went 5th before 2 out and ridden to go 3rd early straight, no impression on winner when not fluent last, no extra run-in opened 14/1 touched 14/1
5th 4 Lyreen Legend (IRE) 11-10 B J Geraghty D T Hughes 7 13/2
Tracked leaders and 6th halfway, progress into 3rd 6 out, went 2nd 3 out, no impression on winner entering straight and soon dropped to 4th, no extra run-in opened 6/1 touched 13/2
6th 12 Lord Windermere (IRE) 11-10 D N Russell J H Culloty 8 6/1
Tracked leaders and 4th halfway, 3rd 3 out, ridden and no extra in 5th early straight, weakened opened 7/1 touched 7/1
7th 47 Roi Du Mee (FR) 11-10 D J Condon G Elliott 9 14/1
Led early, headed 2nd, tracked leader in 2nd, dropped to rear before 2 out, soon no extra and eased, tailed off opened 14/1 touched 16/1

Betting breakdown

Tote Win: £10.20 Tote Place: £3.50,2.10
Straight Forecast: £29.43 Exacta: £38.80

Placepot: €2,130.90, Pool: €0.0

Verdict

No representative from the Willie Mullins' stable that had won the last three renewals but this was a good line-up nonetheless and there was quite possibly an outstanding winner in LAST INSTALMENT. Unbeaten in four starts in his novice season in 2011/12, he had been sidelined by injury until running a promising third in the Kinloch Brae behind Texas Jack in mid-January and built on that in no uncertain terms. He was passed over by Bryan Cooper and proved easy to back but Brian O'Connell gave him a confident ride and the Anshan gelding answered every call, jumping boldly and quickening clear for a commanding success. The Gold Cup picture doesn't have an awful lot of depth to it and the 10/1 (from 40s) about Last Instalment makes a good deal of each-way appeal with most firms offering concessions of the money back or no bet variety for the championship races with connections suggesting that their fragile star could bypass the meeting if the ground were to come up good. Gigginstown would have a worthy substitute in First Lieutenant were that to be the case as Mouse Morris' nine-year-old is a far more effective performer on a faster surface than he encountered here. He didn't jump as well as he can out of this ground but he never gives in and ran another solid race. He was passed for second close home by Tidal Bay who looked to be struggling after losing a prominent position only to come home strongly. It's not difficult to envisage him finishing with a wet sail to challenge for minor honours in the Gold Cup if connections opt to take that route but the Grand National seems the preferred route and his chance there will depend whether this enigmatic performer takes to the fences and consents to keep in close enough touch with the principals to give himself a chance. This trip seems to find Texas Jack out and the Powers Gold Cup over two and a half miles at Fairyhouse in March would appear to be the obvious target. Lyreen Legend was expected to improve for his run in the Lexus and he did finish closer to First Lieutenant but this run would appear to go a long way to confirming his limitations at this level. Lord Windermere led him home in the RSA Chase last March but he hasn't fired this season and he weakened rather tamely having briefly looked a threat. He would prefer better ground but has form under similar conditions and has plenty to prove at present.