BetVictor Gold Cup
Grade 3 Handicap Chase,
£160,000 added, 4yo plus,
2m 4f 78y, Class 1
|Saturday 16th November 2019
1 Happy Diva 14/1
2 Brelan D'As 20/1
3 Warthog 33/1
4 Belami Des Pictons 10/1
17 ran NR: Dell Oro, Royal Village, Saint Calvados
Distances: nk, 8l, 7l Time: 5m 17.72s (slow by 27.22s)
Described as a " bridesmaid " by trainer Kerry Lee, Happy Diva finally enjoyed her day in the sun with a thrilling success in this afternoon's feature race at Cheltenham Racecourse, under 3lb claimer Richard Patrick.
A 14/1 chance, Happy Diva was always travelling well in the two and a half-mile event and was vying for the lead at the penultimate fence, at which 4/1 favourite Slate House, who was travelling very well, fell.
From there, Happy Diva, an eight-year-old daughter of King's Theatre, kept on tremendously under pressure to fend off the persistent Brelan D'As (20/1) for Paul Nicholls and Barry Geraghty to score by a neck.
Happy Diva took her career earnings over the £250,000 mark this afternoon and a delighted Lee paid tribute to her stable star.
She said: " What a brilliant horse Happy Diva is. She has been the bridesmaid once too often, but she is a Listed winner over fences.
" Happy Diva beat Magic Of Light last term who went on to finish second in the Grand National, so the form was there!
" She had always been on the coat tails and it's great to win today.
" It was a great ride by Richard. We came into the race with a gameplan and thankfully it has worked. We had a plan to be positioned by the rail and she travelled really well throughout and jumped beautifully.
" Happy Diva is a tough and gutsy mare and her class shone through.
" It is great to have the Roseff family [winning owners] here today. They have been with the yard since my father [Richard] started over 30 years ago.
" It is great for them all to be here today. They are fantastic owners as if we have a quiet day, they always say there is another one. If we have a great day, boy do they celebrate.
" I think it's five years since dad bought her in Ireland - mum and dad went together and bought her as a store - and I am absolutely over the moon. "
BetVictor Gold Cup Handicap Chase (Grade 3)
£160,000 added, 4yo plus, 2m 4f 78y, Class 1
Going: Soft, Heavy in places
POS DIST HORSE AGE WGT TRAINER JOCKEY SP
1 Happy Diva 8 10-10 Kerry Lee Richard Patrick 14/1
2 nk Brelan D'As 8 10-5 Paul Nicholls Barry Geraghty 20/1
3 8 Warthog 7 10-0 David Pipe David Noonan 33/1
4 7 Belami Des Pictons 8 10-13 Venetia Williams Charlie Deutsch 10/1
5 ¾ Magic Saint 5 11-1 Paul Nicholls Harry Cobden 20/1
6 hd Count Meribel 7 10-13 Nigel Twiston-Davies Mark Grant 9/1
7 15 Us And Them 6 11-5 Joseph O'Brien J J Slevin 7/1
8 1½ Guitar Pete 9 10-8 Nicky Richards Ryan Day 16/1
F Slate House 7 11-0 Colin Tizzard Robbie Power 4/1F
PU Splash Of Ginge 11 10-0 Nigel Twiston-Davies Jamie Bargary 25/1
PU Spiritofthegames 7 11-3 Dan Skelton Harry Skelton 8/1
PU Mercian Prince 8 10-13 Amy Murphy Jack Quinlan 66/1
PU Siruh Du Lac 6 11-3 Nick Williams Lizzie Kelly 8/1
PU Demi Sang 6 10-9 Ben Haslam Richie McLernon 50/1
PU Springtown Lake 7 10-4 Philip Hobbs Richard Johnson 9/1
UR Highway One O One 7 10-11 Chris Gordon Tom Cannon 16/1
UR Eamon An Cnoic 8 10-5 David Pipe Tom Scudamore 16/1
NR 1 Saint Calvados 6 11-12 Harry Whittington NON-RUNNER
NR 13 Royal Village 7 10-9 Ian Williams NON-RUNNER
NR 18 Dell Oro 6 10-2 Gary Moore NON RUNNER