Thistlecrack flawless in third success over fences

Thistlecrack put in a flawless round of jumping to win again

PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos) Thistlecrack cruises to third success over fences
By Mark Scully 1:05PM 26 NOV 2016

Report: Newbury, Saturday

bet365 Novices' Chase (Grade 2) 2m7f86y, 4yo+

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THISTLECRACK put in a flawless round of jumping to win at his leisure and remain undefeated over fences.

The favourite for the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup in March, Thistlecrack had given some cause to doubt his jumping ability after hitting a fence hard at Cheltenham when last seen.

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However, there was none of the exuberance that saw him make that error this time around, with last year's World Hurdle hero treating the obstacles with greater respect and jumping well within himself.

The eight-year-old came home a wide margin clear of Bigbadjohn, who overhauled Ibis Du Rheu in the straight, the latter paying for trying to go with Thistlecrack in the early stages.

"I don't think it gets any better than that, he was immaculate today," said his trainer, Colin Tizzard. "Any fears we had after Cheltenham were put to bed today."

Thistlecrack's victory saw him tighten his grip on the top of the Gold Cup market with some firms, including Paddy Power, who trimmed him from 7-2 into 11-4. William Hill, meanwhile, left him unchanged at 10-3 favourite.

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