Alarazi Heads for County After Imperial Cup Romp
1 Alarazi 10/1
Alarazi fulfilled one of Lucy Wadham's long-held ambitions by winning the Paddy Power Imperial Cup at Sandown.
The final major race before the Cheltenham Festival has frustrated the Newmarket trainer on several occasions, but she put the record straight in style as the 10-1 shot powered clear of joint-favourite Via Galilei up the hill.
Unlucky to lose at Cheltenham on his most recent start, Alarazi could well be back at the track next week, possibly for Friday's County Hurdle, as he will claim a £75,000 bonus from the sponsors if he completes a quick double.
It was a terrific result for Dominic Elsworth, who returned to riding last autumn after spending 14 harrowing months on the sidelines through serious injury, and the pair made serene progress throughout the two miles.
Less could be said for the other joint-favourite Arrayan, who never looked likely to continue the Pipe family's domination of the event and beat only one home.
Wadham said: "It's a bit of a dream - we've been trying to win the race for years and we have been second and third in it before. I've won a Grade One at Punchestown, but this is a thrill.
"He's a Group Three horse on the Flat and has a very high cruising speed, but he never settled in his novice races and these big handicaps really suit him.
"If he's sound I'd like to run at Cheltenham. He's in both the County Hurdle and the Martin Pipe and they are on the same day. Whatever one he gets into he'll go for, but I'd prefer the County."
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