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Cheltenham Festival 2013: Sprinter Sacre wins Champion Chase

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

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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.'

Sprinter Sacre wins Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown

Sprinter Sacre storms to Tingle Creek Chase victory at Sandown on seasonal debut

PUBLISHED:

16:02 GMT, 8 December 2012

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UPDATED:

16:19 GMT, 8 December 2012

Sprinter Sacre ran out a hugely-impressive winner of the the Sportingbet Tingle Creek Chase on his seasonal bow at Sandown.

Nicky Henderson's charge arrived unbeaten in five chase starts last term and he extended that run to six in the hands of Barry Geraghty.

Deeply impressive: Sprinter Sacre and Barry Geraghty jump the last

Deeply impressive: Sprinter Sacre and Barry Geraghty jump the last

Assuming control from the Pond Fence, the 4-11 favourite accelerated away to claim the Grade One prize by 15 lengths.

Sprinter Sacre ran out a hugely-impressive winner of the the Sportingbet Tingle Creek Chase on his seasonal bow at Sandown.

Nicky Henderson's charge arrived
unbeaten in five chase starts last term and he extended that run to six
in the hands of Barry Geraghty.

Assuming control from the Pond Fence, the 4-11 favourite accelerated away to claim the Grade One prize by 15 lengths.

Henderson said: 'He has got the 'wow'
factor. It's been a long time since Aintree and I admit to being
petrified about Sanctuaire.

All too easy: Barry Geraghty takes a peek over his shoulder

All too easy: Barry Geraghty takes a peek over his shoulder

'I knew that horse had got pace and
would put it into the race which would stretch anybody and it was as
soft as our fellow would ever want to go on. “He's just class isn't he

'I knew that I had something a bit special and I just wanted it to stay that way.

'That's as good a two-mile chase as you'll ever see.

'He will probably go for the Victor
Chandler and Cheltenham, I don't know for sure, but there aren't that
many options and then on to Aintree or Punchestown.'

Sprinter scores: Barry Geraghty shows his delight after Tingle Creek success

Sprinter scores: Barry Geraghty shows his delight after Tingle Creek success

Geraghty partnered Moscow Flyer to
win 10 Grade One chases, including two Queen Mother Champion Chases, and
he believes Sprinter Sacre compares favourably.

He added: 'He's the closest I have ridden to Moscow. Time will tell (if he will be as good) but he's going the right way. “He's the most natural I have ever ridden and so far, so good.'

All smiles: Geraghty (right) and trainer Nicky Henderson

All smiles: Geraghty (right) and trainer Nicky Henderson

CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL 2012: Conor Murphy wins 1m

It was pure luck! Stable lad who scooped 1m puts win down to good fortune

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UPDATED:

13:24 GMT, 16 March 2012

The stable lad who won around 1million after backing five of his boss's runners at Cheltenham has described his windfall as 'just pure luck'.

Conor Murphy, 31, placed the bet last December and 'didn't think much about it'.

Lambourn-based trainer Nicky Henderson then weaved his magic.

In the money: Conor Murphy won around 1million at Cheltenham

In the money: Conor Murphy won around 1million at Cheltenham

Sprinter Sacre kicked off the winning spree with victory in Tuesday's Arkle. Simonsig in the Neptune Investment Novices' Hurdle and Bobs Worth in the RSA Chase obliged on Wednesday along with Finian's Rainbow, who Murphy looks after, in the Queen Mother Champion Chase.

Riverside Theatre's success in the Ryanair Chase on Thursday sealed the win for Murphy.

'I still cannot believe it, even this morning it is still sinking in. I haven't even thought about the money yet. It was just pure luck,' he told Newbury Today.

'I put the bet on just before Christmas in December, I just picked the five best horses and hoped for a lot of luck, I didn't think much about it.

'I wasn't really thinking about the bet when they all started coming in; you try so hard to get even one winner here, the day just draws you in.'

Final piece of the jigsaw: Riverside Theatre was Murphy's final selection

Final piece of the jigsaw: Riverside Theatre was Murphy's final selection

Bookmaker Paddy Power said the odds of the horses late last year were Sprinter Sacre (10-1), Simonsig (14-1), Bobs Worth (10-1), Finian's Rainbow (8-1) and Riverside Theatre (9-1).

A spokesman for Paddy Power said: 'That comes in at odds of 163,350-1. I'm glad we dodged that one.'

The bet is believed to have been placed with Bet365.

'We've had a pretty horrendous meeting with plenty of favourites winning and there have been many, many winning accounts,' said spokesman Pat Cooney.

'The one thing we never do is discuss individual accounts.'

Henderson said: 'Everybody here is absolutely thrilled for him.'

Winning start: Sprinter Sacre got the bet off to a flyer in Tuesday's Arkle

Winning start: Sprinter Sacre got the bet off to a flyer in Tuesday's Arkle

Describing the bet as 'an amazing piece of foresight', Henderson reported Murphy to be at work in Lambourn on Friday.

'He's in work this morning – he is one of the linchpins here. He's the most lovely man though, a fantastic guy and very quiet,' the trainer said.

'He rides out Finian's Rainbow every day of the week and he would probably know more than anyone else in the world about that horse.

'Finian's is very special to him.'

The only Henderson-trained winner Murphy did not have in his accumulator was Une Artiste, who triumphed in Wednesday's Fred Winter at 40-1 and only recently joined the stable after moving over from France.

England slip to sixth in FIFA world rankings

England slip behind Brazil to sixth in FIFA world rankings after Dutch defeat

England have dropped behind Brazil to sixth in FIFA's latest world rankings following the 3-2 friendly defeat to Holland at Wembley last week.

The Dutch, meanwhile, retook the No 2 position from Germany after trading places one month ago. The Germans lost 2-1 at home to France.

World and European champions Spain remain top of the rankings, while Argentina return to the top 10.

A Dutch disappointing: England lost 3-2 at home to Holland last week

A Dutch disappointing: England lost 3-2 at home to Holland last week

Uruguay are at No 4, followed by Brazil who rose two places to fifth. Portugal fell one place to seventh.

Argentina climbed three places to No 8, and Italy and Croatia complete the top 10.

Sacre Bleu: Germany have slipped following their home defeat to France

Sacre Bleu: Germany have slipped following their home defeat to France

Ivory Coast are the highest African team at No 15.

Australia, at No 20, head the Asian confederation nations and are top seed in a 10-nation draw for the final round of 2014 World Cup qualifying on Friday.

WIN Cheltenham Gold Cup tickets and a 100 bet

WIN Cheltenham Gold Cup tickets and a 100 bet on the big race – courtesy of Paddy Power

Paddy Power

Sportsmail has teamed up with top bookie Paddy Power to offer two lucky readers the chance to win a pair of tickets each to the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

You could experience the unique atmosphere of the Cheltenham Festival as Paddy Power will provide you with club badges for Friday, March 16 and a 100 bet to spend on the Gold Cup.

For your chance to win this fantastic prize answer the following question.

How many times has Kauto Star won the Cheltenham Gold Cup

TwoThreeFour

E-mail your answer, along with your name, address and contact number to:

[email protected]

to arrive by 9am on Monday, March 12.

PLEASE NOTE:
You must validate your entry with the words PADDY POWER CHELTENHAM in your
subject box; you must be over 18 to enter; prize is for Friday March 16 and does not include travel to or from the racecourse. Normal
Associated Newspapers terms and conditions apply – the Editor's
decision is final.

Look out as well for Paddy Power’s latest betting on Cheltenham as well as their Money-Back Special on the first day of the meeting where Paddy Power will refund losing bets in The Arkle Chase if favourite Sprinter Sacre wins the race. For more information click HERE.

Newbury abandon horse racing card on Saturday

Big freeze strikes again as Newbury are forced to abandon Saturday's card

Saturday's fantastic card at Newbury has been abandoned due to snow.

There had been optimistic noises that the meeting would beat the weather and frost covers had been down for nearly two weeks.

However, following 4cm of snow overnight course officials were left with no choice.

Abandoned: Newbury were forced to cancel their meeting on Saturday

Abandoned: Newbury were forced to cancel their meeting on Saturday

With the likes of Long Rung, Sprinter Sacre and Zarkandar all due to have a run before Cheltenham, there is the possibility of the meeting being rearranged.

'We've had to abandon,' said clerk of the course Richard Osgood.

Star attraction: Long Run was due to run at Newbury on Saturday

Star attraction: Long Run was due to run at Newbury on Saturday

'There's snow on the covers and there is no predicted rise in temperatures or rain which would help shift it.

'There have been preliminary discussions about restaging the fixture and we are looking to hold it next week but at this stage I know nothing more than that.'