Native River abilities free from his rivals into the Hennessy Gold Cup
PICTURE: Getty Images
By Andrew Dietz 3:24PM 26 NOV 2016
Report: Newbury, Saturday
Hennessy Gold Cup Chase (Grade 3) 3m1f214y, 4yo+
FAVOURITE Native River clung on from the fast-finishing Carole’s Destrier to provide champ jockey Richard Johnson a primary Hennessy success and keep the big-race dominance of trainer Colin Tizzard.
Seven days on from Cue Card’s sensational performance in the Betfair Chase and just over couple of hours after star novice Thistlecrack gained a foot-perfect third chase success, Tizzard unearthed a third potential Cheltenham Gold Cup candidate in the form of the modern Brocade Racing-owed chaser.
While Cue Card and Thistlecrack have cruising speeds to die for, Native River is cut from a various cloth along with his bottomless stamina effective at breaking the most challenging of rivals.
Nudged along by Johnson from a good way out, Native River kept finding many despite a wayward jump three out, the pair quickly regrouped to take control the lead over the second-last.
The challengers were lined up in behind at the last fence nevertheless the 7-2 favourite rolled up his sleeves and driven clear regarding run-in. Although gallant runner-up Carole’s Destrier closed the gap all the way to the line, Native River had simply done enough.
‘I can’t think it’
Tizzard, the envy of his colleagues and coming in at 6-4 to coach the Gold Cup winner by Betfair, stated: “I have got all the toys at this time, I can’t believe it. The horses came in my experience, i’ven’t found them, and I also don’t know how many i shall have in the Gold Cup.”
The trainer, who exceeded the million mark as a whole prize-money the very first time final period, is on course to do exactly the same before Christmas now. After triumph in the £200,000 showpiece, he was cut into 4-1 (from 6-1) the trainers’ championship by William Hill, having been a 25-1 opportunity in the beginning of the campaign.
Like Cue Card, Native River was dispatched to Wetherby for their seasonal comeback and his second-placed finish in the bet365 Hurdle had been viewed as the perfect pipe-opener for the Hennessy.
But the gritty chestnut actually chaser through and through as he confirmed on this day a year ago with triumph in bet365 Novices’ Chase – won by Thistlecrack this time – and subsequent shows when 2nd in nationwide Hunt Chase and an impressive winner associated with level 1 Betfred Mildmay Novices’ Chase.
Regarding future goals, Tizzard included: “Native River won’t be going back over hurdles now. He’s in the Coral Welsh National but could be somewhat better than that.
“If he is in identical kind of type in March he could join the team inside Gold Cup. If you win a Hennessy you’re frequently right up here with all the most readily useful of them.
“We dreamt after he won the novice chase right here this day this past year that me personally would be right back for the Hennessy.
“The battle went perfectly for him and I was surprised just how well he was travelling. I did not such as the idea of bullying him all the time and Richard has ridden him brilliantly.”
Champion bags a Hennessy
Johnson had two times finished second in Hennessy but finally finished a wait extending right back 18 years. He stated: “It’s always good to win one you have not prior to. He is an incredible horse and Colin and their group are in amazing kind.
“I’d knew he’d grab once again, although submiting I was slightly worried I becamen’t going that well.
“But he’s those types of – the greater you ask, the more he offers.”
Neil Mulholland had blended feelings after Carole’s Destrier’s barnstorming belated run. He stated: “it’s really a tiny double-edged sword as he’s run such a great battle but we have been sick to have so near.
“the master plan would be to come here then opt for the Coral Welsh National in which he indicates he jumps, stays and gallops and wishes further.
“He was a little slow during the final but has arrived home strongly and I also have always been happy with him. He will have an entry into the Aintree Grand nationwide basically can persuade their owner.”
Ten-year-old Double Ross went a mighty race in third as he experimented with get to be the first champion aged in double digits since Diamond Edge in 1981, while Hadrian’s Approach remained on for 4th.