Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase
|Class 2, Cheltenham 15:00
3m 6f 37y
|Friday 17th November 2017
1 Kingswell Theatre 14/1
Vicomte Du Seuil 12/1
Urgent De Gregaine 7/2
10 ran NR: Cause Of Causes Distances: ¾l, 6l, 3½l
Time: 8m 14.60s (slow by 10.60s)
The Michael Scudamore-trained 14/1 shot Kingswell Theatre produced a game performance to make all and fend off his challengers in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase.
Ridden by Michael's brother Tom, the eight-year-old son of King's Theatre responded willingly to the jockey's urgings to maintain his lead up the punishing Cheltenham hill to score by three-quarters of a length from Vicomte Du Seuil in second, with a further six lengths back to Urgent De Gregaine in third.
The Bromsash handler said: "He took to the fences nicely today. We know he stays having won the Devon National at Exeter in February and Tom gave him a great ride.
"A lot of credit has to go to Tom as in the home straight, he kept all the challengers at bay. He's always been a great judge of pace as he got it spot on there.
"It's been a long old summer. We haven't had a great time of things or a great start to the season, so to come here and get off the cold list like that means a lot.
"He came here in March for The Festival and he did take to the course. We came back here earlier in the week and gave him a school round and going over those fences really seemed to bring him to life."
"He is a dear little horse and we came here not thinking anything great with the Enda Bolger and JP horses but he had been well at home.
"Kate, my fiancée, looks after the horse and does all the hard work with him every day. I think I owe Tom a drink after that ride. The one thing that Tom does do - through Dad, I suppose, and the Pipe years - is that he a brilliant judge of pace. He got that about spot-on today.
"This is a very hard game and it's very hard to replace horses like Monbeg Dude
, who was an absolutely star. Mysteree gave us a great year last year, winning the Eider Chase and finishing second in the Midlands National, but you need horses like him to keep you on the map.
"It's great for the owners, who have been with me for a few years now, and it's really special to give them a first winner here."
Both the second and third-placed horses, Vicomte De Seuil and Urgent De Gregaine
, were trained in France by Emmanuel Clayeux. They finished three-quarters of a length and six lengths respectively behind the winner.
Clayeux, who trains near Moulins in central France, said: "I'm very pleased, especially with Vicomte De Seuil [ridden by Charlie Deutsch] - it was a test for him and I think I will bring him back in January and probably in March for The Festival - I like Cheltenham.
"And for Urgent De Gregaine, he ran in the Pardubice 40 days ago [he finished second, a length behind the winner, under today's jockey Felix de Giles] and I think it was probably too soon. That was a very long, hard race and even though he seems in good form, I think he probably needed more time."
Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase
£25,000 added, 5yo plus, 3m 6f 37y, Class 2
||Kingswell Theatre 14/1
||Vicomte Du Seuil (FR) 12/1
||Charlie Deutsch (3)
||Urgent De Gregaine (FR) 7/2
||Felix de Giles
||Cantlow (IRE) 6/1
||M P Walsh
||Adam du Breteau (FR) 50/1
||R P McLernon
||Inis Meain (USA) 50/1
||D G Hogan
||Aubusson (FR) 6/1
||Lizzie Kelly (3)
||Bertie Boru (IRE) 12/1
||Mr Jake Bament (7)
|P J Hobbs
||Cause Of Causes (USA)
||Mr J J Codd
|Also Ran: Auvergnat (FR) , Need To Know (IRE)