The Betfair Exchange "Fixed Brush" Handicap Hurdle
Haydock Park 14:25
£80,000 added, 4yo plus,
2m 6f 177y, Class 1
|Saturday 19th November 2016|
1 Kruzhlinin 9/1
2 Theo's Charm 15/2
3 Yala Enki 5/1F
NR: Thomas Crapper, Unowhatimeanharry
13 ran Distances: 2½l, 6l, 2l
TIME 5m 56.90s (slow by 28.90s)
Kruzhlinin digs deep under Richard Johnson
The Philip Hobbs-trained Kruzhlinin was to the fore from the start under Richard Johnson in a race run in attritional conditions that had most of the field well beaten off before the home turn.
Third behind Caid Du Berlais on his seasonal reappearance at Aintree, he comprehensively reversed that form with a bloodless display.
Headed by Theo's Charm two out, he had rallied to lead again by the last as the pair steadily pulled clear of their tiring rivals.
Theo's Charm came again on the long run-in and pushed Kruzhlinin (9/1) all the way to the winning post, but the two-and-a-half-length winning margin was thoroughly deserved.
Yala Enki held off Donna's Diamond for third place.
Hobbs said: "This horse ran well the other day at Aintree. We were just a bit worried about the ground today, but he coped with it really well. He's very genuine.
"The blinkers sharpened him up a bit. I never doubted his resolution. He had lost his confidence a bit after the Grand National.
"He went to Chepstow and jumped enormous. He wasn't enjoying it all so we went back over hurdles and got the bonus of this which is great.
"He's been to Aintree three times over the National fences. It's not really his job so he won't do it again.
"This is a fantastic prize, especially as it's just a fortnight after his last run. It's really good."
Betfair Exchange "Fixed Brush" Handicap Hurdle
£80,000 added, 4yo plus, 2m 6f 177y, Class 1
|Pos||D||Horse SP||Jockey Weight||Trainer||Age|
|1st||Kruzhlinin (GER) 9/1||R Johnson
|P J Hobbs||9|
|2nd||2½||Theo's Charm (IRE) 15/2||Wayne Hutchinson
|N J Gifford||6|
|3rd||6||Yala Enki (FR) 5/1f||Harry Cobden (3)
|Miss V Williams||6|
|4th||2||Donna's Diamond (IRE) 50/1||Ryan Hatch (3)
|5th||2¾||Westren Warrior (IRE) 6/1||B Hughes
|Dr R D P Newland||7|
|6th||14||Point The Way (IRE) 6/1||Danny Cook
|7th||9||Two Taffs (IRE) 7/1||Harry Skelton
|PU||Caid Du Berlais (FR) 9/1||Stan Sheppard (5)
|P F Nicholls||7|
|PU||Ballybolley (IRE) 20/1||Jamie Bargary (3)
|N A Twiston-Davies||7|
|PU||Western Cape (IRE) 16/1||Kevin Jones (5)
|J W Mullins||5|
|PU||Affaire D'honneur (FR) 16/1||Joshua Moore
|UR||Matorico (IRE) 20/1||Aidan Coleman
|UR||Rathpatrick (IRE) 20/1||Jonathan Moore (3)
|NR||Unowhatimeanharry 7/1||N D Fehily
|NR||Thomas Crapper 25/1||C Poste