Kim Bailey's fine run of form continued as Harry Topper came from the clouds to land a strong renewal of the Grade Two GPG Novices' Chase at Newbury.
Having impressed on his fencing bow at Exeter, Harry Topper was a 3-1 shot faced with five talented opponents who had all won their most recent starts.
Irish raider Benefficient disputed the lead with Highland Lodge throughout and looked the likely winner when seeing off that rival between the final two fences. At that stage Harry Topper still had upwards of 10 lengths to make up on the leader, but he fairly rattled home on the run-in under Timmy Murphy to score by a length and a half.
Bailey, who is normally quite restrained in his post-race assessments, said: "He won't see a racecourse very often, as Timmy said I've got to look after him as he is desperately weak.
"He'll run one or two more times this season, because he is very, very good. I've always held a very high opinion of him and he's the best horse I've had since Master Oats. He wants flat, galloping tracks at the moment, and in 18 months' time I'd hope you will see him at Cheltenham. He is the horse of my dreams."
Sizing Santiago claimed an eventful Sportingbet Handicap Chase for Peter Bowen and Jamie Moore.
Sent off at 9-1 following a good run in defeat at Cheltenham's Open meeting a fortnight ago, Sizing Santiago was never too far off the pace in the extended two-mile-six-furlong contest and moved into the lead on the run to the third-last. The challengers were queuing up to have a crack at him all the way up the straight but Sizing Santiago held on grimly to score by a length from Our Bomber Harris.
The horse to take from the race was undoubtedly Rigadin De Beauchene, whose conditional jockey Robert Dunne performed miracles to stay in the saddle following a horrendous mistake four fences from home. Just when it looked as though his chance had gone, he rallied to grab third spot and was probably unlucky not to win.
Dunne said: "It helped that he kept straight, so I was able to hang on. Coming to the second-last, I still thought I was going to win but he is not a nimble horse and that put an end to it."
Bowen said of the winner: "I got him at the May sales, and I wanted him because he is a half-brother to Take The Stand. He's only a six-year-old and is actually better than Take The Stand was at his age. We'll see what the handicapper does now."
26 August 2016Charlie Appleby wary of more rain for Curragh-bound Skiffle
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Marco Botti Hopeful of big Naadirr run at Newmarket
Ulysses and Foundation ready for action in Winter Hill Stakes at Windsor
Celebration Mile at Goodwood the 'logical' target for Thikriyaat
Jack Hobbs pleasing John Gosden as he nears return to action
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Awtaad aiming to bounce back in Boomerang outing
Alexios Komnenos on course for Churchill rematch in National Stakes
Almanzor on Irish Champion trail
25 August 2016Thikriyaat heads Celebration quintet
Newmarket uphill gallops plan announced by Jockey Club Estates
Harry Dunlop issues Robin Of Navan St Leger advisory
John Gosden calls time on To Eternity season
Martin Keighley to learn fate over Any Currency substance test
Clive Cox reflects upon Tis Marvellous reverse in Prix Morny
Creggs Pipes takes Fairy Bridge test at Tipperary
Ryan Moore to return with Newmarket mount on Friday
Jet Setting skips Tipperary date with sights set on Matron outing
Qemah on course for Matron date
Bocca Baciata team planning thorough checks after Deauville disappointment
24 August 2016Conqueress rules at Lingfield for Tom Dascombe and Deva Racing
Amy Murphy set to join training ranks
Aidan O'Brien confirms ante-post favourite Idaho for St Leger at Doncaster
Ben Pauling mapping out novice chase campaign with Barters Hill
Michael Dods expecting Easton Angel to blossom in 2017
Racing mourns death of 'voice of the north' Tom O'Ryan
Jim Crowley keeps up title-chase momentum
Long-term Grand National thoughts for Neil Mulholland
Jonathan Portman holds fire with Mrs Danvers
Ulysses set for Winter Hill test at Windsor
Classic heroine La Cressonniere enhances Arc claims at Deauville
Wings Of Desire remains in the St Leger reckoning
Dancing Star connections consider Haydock riding options
Postponed team eyeing Breeders' Cup bid after Arc run
Roger Varian plotting QEII route with Belardo
23 August 2016Hit The Bid set to wait for Newbury
Skiffle heads Snow Fairy contenders at the Curragh
Adam Brickell to leave British Horseracing Authority
Champagne date possible for York victor Rivet
Mutakayyef team considering supplementing for Irish Champion
32Red unveiled as new sponsor of Sprint Cup at Haydock
Garrowby on Nameitwhatyoulike's radar ahead of Ayr Gold Cup date
Two footballers banned from British racecourses following Cheltenham incident
Ryan Moore back in gallops action but no date set for track return
Irish ace Maarek in line for Bullet defence at Beverley
Ken Condon hoping for 'more to come' from Success Days
Shantou Village primed for fencing debut at Fontwell
Mehmas on course for glittering two-year-old showdown at Newmarket
South Seas likely to chart course to Dewhurst
Prix de l'Abbaye the main goal for Michael Dods and York heroine Mecca's Angel
Curragh or Doncaster on the table for Clever Cookie after 'flat' York run
Kieren Fallon 'doing great' and riding out in Newmarket