Coney-glee at Cheltenham

Published: Friday 13th March 2015 by The News Editor

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Coneygree became the first novice to strike for 41 years when making most of the running in the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup.

The eight-year-old, trained by Mark Bradstock and ridden by Nico de Boinville, took the blue riband prize of steeplechasing on only his fourth race over fences.

The success fully vindicated the decision to bypass the RSA Chase earlier in the week and run in the Gold Cup instead.

Coneygree (7-1) held on up the hill by a length and a half from Djakadam (10-1), with Road To Riches (8-1) two lengths away in third.

De Boinville said: “It’s the best feeling ever, I’m lost for words. I never thought they shouldn’t have run in this, it was a great plan.

“The weather gods were looking down on us and the ground was ideal.

“He’s so deceptive, even when he gets in tight he’s brilliant, it’s all thanks to the Bradstock family, it’s a great family effort.

“I must thank the owners and the Bradstocks for keeping the faith in me. These horses only come once in a lifetime.”

Sara Bradstock, wife of the winning trainer and daughter of the late Lord Oaksey, who bred Coneygree, said: “He (Lord Oaksey) is not here, but he’s here in spirit.

“I’d been saying to people, when we win the Gold Cup we’ll win the lottery, it’s that amazing.”

“It’s only his fourth run over fences, but he had so much time off and he’s wise in his own way.”

Lady Oaksey said: “I’ve been asking myself what decision would John (Oaksey) have made? As it turned out, it was a very good decision after looking at Vautour and Don Poli (in the novice chases).

“To win this now – you dream and it’s absolutely amazing.”

Published: Friday 13th March 2015 by The News Editor

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