Cheltenham Festival 2013: Sprinter Sacre wins Champion Chase

Superstar Sprinter Sacre romps to victory in Champion Chase with sensational run

.

Geraghty said: 'He's a beautiful horse to ride. I've never ridden one as natural to jump. Things would have to go very wrong to go wrong.

'Once he's healthy and well, you get him relaxed and into a nice rhythm. He does the rest and he's a pleasure to ride.

Main man: Barry Geraghty steered Sprinter Sacre to victory over Sizing Europe who was 19 lengths behind

Main man: Barry Geraghty steered Sprinter Sacre to victory over Sizing Europe who was 19 lengths behind

Main man: Barry Geraghty steered Sprinter Sacre to victory over Sizing Europe who was 19 lengths behind

'I've ridden some brilliant horses over the years, but the ease and the grace that he does it with sets him apart.'

Henderson, greeting his 49th Festival winner, said: 'He's just very special. (I'm relieved) It's over.

'He just has that way of doing it.

'He finds it ridiculously easy – he just loves doing it.

'He loves to attack his fences. We are very lucky to have him.

'I hope people have enjoyed watching him.

'We've talked about Punchestown, and I'm sure Richie Galway (Punchestown manager) would like us to talk about it a bit more. He is a two-miler and I don't think Aintree really will be him.

'There's a nice Grade One in Ireland and maybe we go for that and then wrap him up.'

Crowd pleaser: Barry Geraghty takes the plaudits after his victory on board Sprinter Sacre at Cheltenham

Crowd pleaser: Barry Geraghty takes the plaudits after his victory on board Sprinter Sacre at Cheltenham

Caroline Mould's husband, Raymond, said: 'It's absolutely incredible.

'One lives in hope and expectation, but the reality is incredible.

'To see him do it like that is fantastic.

'What more can one say'

Sizing Europe's rider Andrew Lynch said: 'I tripped up on the path on the crossing, but I wouldn't use that as an excuse – the winner is some horse.

'I took it to him to see how good he was and my lad ran with great credit.'

Sizing Europe's trainer Henry de Bromhead said: 'We have been beaten by a phenomenon. We had a go, but came off second best.

Take a bow: Nicky Henderson was relieved after watching his charge justify favouritism

Take a bow: Nicky Henderson was relieved after watching his charge justify favouritism

'Andrew said he tripped on the path but that it made no difference to the result.

'He's still finished second in a Champion Chase and even at 11 he is still a very good horse, but we have been beaten by a special one.

'We made the decision to run in this (rather than Ryanair Chase or Gold Cup) and there is nothing we can do about that now.

'He was ridden to win the race. He jumped brilliant today and we know that he stays further so we will do whatever is best for the horse and I am sure Punchestown will come into it.

'He seems as good as ever, but the winner put us in our place.'