14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Estrella bags record at SouthwellHeadlines
La Estrella

La Estrella raced into the record books as he became the first horse in history to rack up 13 consecutive victories at the same track.

The Don Cantillon-trained-and-owned nine-year-old returned to Southwell having won each of his 12 previous starts on the all-weather circuit, a record shared with Royal Charlie, who raced in the 1870s at Newmarket.

La Estrella was a 2-7 favourite for the Claiming Stakes, despite it being his first racecourse appearance since his latest course triumph in late May.

Adam Kirby settled the market leader on the wide outside of the field before delivering his challenge at the top of the home straight.

Pendragon proved a tough nut to crack and there was little to choose between the pair heading inside the final furlong, but despite hanging to his left, La Estrella got on top close home to score by a length and a half.

Cantillon said: "That was absolutely marvellous. He had a little lug to his left, but this run should put him straight.

"It's a fabulous achievement for the horse. I'm incredibly proud of him. It's all down to him. He's probably an incredibly good horse in this company. He's had problems. We'll see how he is in the morning, but he is a very happy horse."

La Estrella registered his first success at Southwell in November 2008 and all but one of the victories have come in either claiming or selling company.

The veteran has actually suffered defeat at the track, having unseated Dominic Elsworth at the second-last when still holding every chance in a beginners' chase in 2008.

Kirby told At The Races: "It was a good training performance. He'll come forward for the run. We didn't go very quick and the race wasn't really run to suit, but to be fair to him, he tries."

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