Attaglance Takes the Martin Pipe Hurdle
1 Attaglance 20/1
Malcolm Jefferson secured a second Cheltenham Festival victory of the week when Attaglance landed the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle.
After Dato Star’s win in the 1995 Weatherbys Bumper, Malcolm Jefferson’s next winner at the Cheltenham Festival was Cape Tribulation in Thursday’s Pertemps Final. And, having waited 17 years for another Festival winner, two have come along at once.
“If I have to wait another 17 years,” said the veteran Malton trainer as he welcomed Attaglance into the hallowed winner’s circle after the Marin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle, “I don’t think I’ll be here.”
Attaglance won by a neck with a determined display under Harry Haynes. “They both did it well,” added Jefferson. “This is a tough, genuine, gutsy horse, easy to train and gives you everything, the sort you’d love 10 of.
“We’d had this as his target for a while. We ran him at Sandown to try to get a mark to get into the race and he was a bit unfortunate, there was a false start and then he completely missed the first and Ruby [Walsh] wisely pulled him up.
“Then he had to win at Market Rasen, which he did easily. He went up 9lb for that, which got him here, and judging by the close finish, the handicapper was just about right.
“This horse and Cape Tribulation are two right nice horses. But for this meeting, you need nice horses.”
Jefferson’s Festival score is now four, having won the Pertemps Final in 1994 with Tindari.
HAYNES BREAKS FESTIVAL DUCK
Conditional rider Harry Haynes had his first Festival success when partnering Attaglance to victory in the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle.
“It’s only me third ride at the Festival so I’m pretty inexperienced here,” said Haynes. “I came seventh on one for James Ewart here last year and then came nowhere on one here on Tuesday. This is brilliant and it’s a shame the Festival is nearly over, I can’t wait for next year.
“The horse probably travelled a bit too well for the first half mile and it felt like it was going to be a five-furlong sprint. But he travelled and jumped brilliantly and never missed a hurdle.
“He doesn’t like to be crowded in a race and when he saw the hill he galloped all the way to the line. He was not stopping.”
Gordon-Elliott, trainer of runner-up Toner D’Oudaires, said: “It’s disappointing not to have won. He missed the last and would have won if he jumped it.”
Jockey Robert Kirk was taken to Cheltenham General Hospital after falling from Ski Sunday for assessment of a possible neck injury.
THE MARTIN PIPE CONDITIONAL JOCKEYS’ HANDICAP HURDLE FACTS & FIGURES
1. Run for the first time in 2009, the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle is named after one the greatest trainers of modern times, who retired at the end of the 2005/06 season. In a career spanning 32 years, Martin Pipe was champion trainer on no fewer than 15 occasions. His 4,182 winners included 34 at The Festival.
2. Martin’s son David ran seven horses in the first running in 2009 with Big Eared Fran faring best of the septet in third.
3. Andytown won the the 2009 contest for jockey Felix de Giles and trainer Nicky Henderson, who equalled Martin’s total of 34 Cheltenham Festival winners in the process.
MARTIN PIPE CONDITIONAL JOCKEYS’ HANDICAP HURDLE
2011-WINNER-SIR DES CHAMPS 5-11-03 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jocket-Emmet Mullins; SP-9/2 Fav
2010-WINNER-PAUSE AND CLAUSE 6-11-10 Owner-Robert Cohen; Trainer-Emma Lavelle; Jockey-Johnny Farrelly; SP-14/1
2009-WINNER-ANDYTOWN 6-11-02 Owner-Richard & Lizzie Kelvin Hughes; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-Felix de Giles; SP-25/1
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