Bobs Worth Bags Albert Bartlett
1 Bobs Worth 15/8 Fav
Bobs Worth and Mossley gave Nicky Henderson a notable one-two in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham for his first winner of the meeting.
He said: “It’s been a long week. But I have to say I do feel sorry for Michael Buckley [the owner of runner-up Mossley] who has been having seconds all week along with me. Now I’ve beaten him with my own horse which seems quite cruel to me.
“But this horse is owned by a big bunch of great mates and they’ll all be celebrating tonight.
“One bookmaker must be quite pleased because I backed myself at 16/1 to have no winners -that was my insurance policy. They’ve been running well though. The first daywas absolute purgatory because they were so close.”
Henderson added: “I had to push quite hard to send Bobs Worth to this race. He has stayed and that’s what he is. The two and a half [Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle] looked really tough and this is a huge relief.”
Winning jockey Barry Geraghty, who bought Bobs Worth as a yearling and sold him as a four-year-old,q said: “He’s unassuming -he never gives you the impression that he has all that but then away he goes. He has a lovely attitude.
“If I’d had another winner in the week I’d have come here today saying he was a certainty because I felt he was but after this week it was hard to say. The results weren’t coming our way.
“I’d say we got a fair price for him when we sold him and now I’m getting bonuses on his back. I’ve no complaints.”
FENCES NEXT SEASON FOR COURT IN MOTION AND MOSSLEY
Emma Lavelle is looking forward to seeing how Court In Motion fares over fences next season after the six-year-old finished third behind the Nicky Henderson pair of Bob’s Worth and Mossley in the Grade One Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle over three miles.
Lavelle said: “It would have been great to have won it but he has run a blinder to finish third.
“He jumped really well, it’s just that on better ground he lacks that gear. The others quickened and he couldn’t quite quicken in the same manner but he kept galloping all the way to the line.
“I can’t wait to see him jump a fence!
“Nobody could have given him a better ride than Jack. He had him in the right place all the way through. If he was good enough on the day he would have won but he just lacked that extra pace on the ground.”
Doyle commented: “He travelled super and gave me a great ride. There are no excuses, he was just not good enough today but he’ll be the real deal over fences next year.”
The Nicky Henderson-trained Mossley stayed on in pursuit of stablemate Bob’s Worth but the 12/1 runner-up was unable to overhaul the well-backed 15/8 favourite.
Owner Michael Buckley said: “He’s only five and the winner was a year older. I think that makes a big difference in that the other horse was a bit more grown up. I shouldn’t think he’ll run again this season and will come back novice chasing next season. I’m delighted Nicky has had a winner.”
CHAMPION COURT SUCH A BRIGHT PROSPECT
Gloucestershire trainer Martin Keighley was looking to the future while enjoying the moment following Champion Court’s good run when fourth in the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle.
Keighley said: “He’s a very bright prospect. That was only his third run over hurdles, and Warren [Marston] said the way he jumped the hurdles at speed that two and a half miles might suit him better.
He’s quite a fresh horse because we had to give our horses a break [in midwinter] when they were wrong, so he’ll probably go to Aintree now.
“Next season he will jump fences. He’s not filled his frame yet and will be quite a horse when he does. He gives us a lot to look forward to.”
2010-WINNER-BERTIES DREAM 7-11-07 Owner-Half A Keg Syndicate; Trainer-Paul Gilligan IRE; Jockey-Andrew Lynch; SP-33/1
2008-WINNER-NENUPHAR COLLONGES 7-11-07 Owner-Top Brass Partnership; Trainer-Alan King; Jockey-Robert Thornton; SP-9/1
2007-WINNER-WICHITA LINEMAN 6-11-07 Owner-J P McManus; Trainer-Jonjo O’Neill; Jockey-Tony McCoy; SP-11/8 Fav
JACK KETCHUM 7-11-07 Owner-Gay Smith; Trainer-Jonjo
O'Neill; Jockey-Tony McCoy; SP-Evens Fav
RICHE 4-11-00 Owner-Elite Racing Club; Trainer-Alan
King; Jockey-Robert Thornton; SP-9/1
FACTS AND FIGURES ALBERT BARTLETT NOVICES’ HURDLE
1. The Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle was added to The Festival in 2005 and provides a valuable opportunity for staying novice hurdlers as it is run over three miles. Initially sponsored by Brit Insurance, it was backed by Albert Bartlett for the first time in 2008, coinciding with its upgrade to Grade One status.
2. The inaugural running went to Moulin Riche, trained by Francois Doumen in France and partnered to success by Robert Thornton. Thornton enjoyed a second success aboard the Alan King-trained Nenuphar Collonges in 2008.
3. Trainer Jonjo O’Neill and jockey Tony McCoy combined to take two consecutive runnings with impressive winners – Wichita Lineman, who scored by 12 lengths in 2007, and Black Jack Ketchum, a nine-length winner in 2006. Both started favourite.
4. Weapon’s Amnesty became the first Irish-trained winner of the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle in 2009, taking the spoils for trainer Charles Byrnes and jockey Davy Russell. He returned to The Festival in 2010 to win the RSA Chase. Berties Dream doubled the Irish tally when scoring in 2010.
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