Pingshou delights connections
News of the rest of the action from Cheltenham where Pingshou impressed as he completed a double for Colin Tizzard.
While Thistlecrack and Cue Card may be the current stable stars at the burgeoning yard of Colin Tizzard, there is every chance Pingshou could follow suit after his victory in the British Stallion Studs EBF "National Hunt" Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham.
Having shown plenty of promise on his debut for the Dorset handler behind the well-regarded Jenkins, the six-year-old took another step forward when capturing a race which in recent years has gone to the likes of Noland, Tidal Bay, Darlan and Ballyalton.
Although pressed late on by the long-absent William Henry, the 14/1 chance held on by a length for Aidan Coleman.
Tizzard, who was also on the mark with Theatre Guide, said: "He didn't race for two years until two weeks ago at Newbury and now he has won a novice hurdle at Cheltenham, so he must be all right.
"Even if he had got swallowed up on the bend it would have been a lovely run, but he stuck his head out and stayed on beautifully. He is a big chap. He nearly didn't run today, but Alan Potts (owner) was here. That was a lovely winner for us."
Still Believing (16/1) made her stamina count as she was rewarded for her consistency with victory in the CF Roberts Electrical & Mechanical Services Mares' Handicap Chase at Cheltenham.
Dawnieriver looked to have stolen a march on her rivals when forging clear four out but she had nothing left when Adam Wedge ranged alongside after the second-last fence on Still Believing.
Evan Williams' eight-year-old bounded up the hill in resolute fashion to land the spoils by 10 lengths from Treaty Girl.
Williams said: "She's a tough, genuine and consistent mare and she was given a very sensible ride.
"The others probably thought it was the Festival (referring to fast pace), hence the winning margin, but I'll take every Cheltenham winner I get.
"She's a filly that has done nothing wrong all her life and deserved to win a chase or two.
"This is what jump racing is all about. I paid £4,000 for her in a sale here and she's come back and won. We've had a lot of fun with her and hopefully we'll breed a few foals from her that will win races in the future."
The Classic-winning colours of owner Sue Magnier were carried to a rare victory at the track after Call To Order ended his status as a maiden in the Citipost Handicap Hurdle.
Stepping up to three miles for the first time, the Jonjo O'Neill-trained 11/2 shot proved three and three-quarter lengths too strong for For Good Measure to initiate a brace for Coleman.
Coleman said: "He was stepping up in trip and had the cheekpieces on to sharpen him up. He travelled very powerfully and probably got there a touch too soon. He got his head down and showed a good attitude."
A trip to Switzerland could be on the cards for Kapstadt (12/1) after he made his first visit to Cheltenham a successful one in the Catesby Handicap Hurdle.
Eased into contention by Tom O'Brien, the Ian Williams-trained six-year-old pulled comfortably clear to register victory by six lengths.
Williams said: "We were going to send him chasing, but on today's performance we will stick to hurdles a little while longer.
"He could end up in St Moritz for the Grand Prix out there in February, as the owners love a bit of skiing!"
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