Delight for Alexandra Dunn with 66-1 Wincanton winner

‘The yard are chuffed to bits’

  • Thursday 22 November
  • News
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Thahab Ifraj showed he was not there to simply make up the numbers when defying his 66-1 price tag with a surprise success in the Smith & Williamson Handicap Hurdle at Wincanton.

Fresh from a spin on the Flat at Wolverhampton 21 days earlier, the Alexandra Dunn-trained five-year-old appeared to benefit for the step up to two and a half miles when proving a length too strong for Whatthebutlersaw.

The West Buckland handler said: “I think clearly as he was 66-1 it was a surprise, but Adam Wedge rode a particularly good race and that was a massive factor.

“The ground was good to firm and it was a slowly-run race that turned into a sprint and with him being Flat-bred on paper these were his conditions.

“We were fit, sharp and ready from the Flat. The yard are chuffed to bits. It was nice to win a Class Three off bottom weight for good prize-money.

“The yard are on a real high and I’m sure a bottle of champagne will be opened at some point.”

She added: “In three weeks time we will finish a major development and will have a 75-box capacity. We’ve had to work hard for this, but things are going well and long may it continue.”

Trainer Katy Price and jockey Ben Poste teamed up to claim a double, kick-started by the 15-length success of Definite Winner (11-1) in the opening Smith & Williamson Salisbury Handicap Hurdle.

Clondaw Rigger (9-4) continued his recent revival when providing Price and Poste with further glory in following up his victory at Chepstow when holding on by three-quarters of a length in the Smith & Williamson Handicap Chase.

Having sent out five winners during the last meeting at the Somerset track, 10-times champion trainer Paul Nicholls had to be content with a double on this occasion, initiated by the length-and-a-quarter victory of Capeland (8-11) under Harry Cobden in the Smith & Williamson Chase.

Rhythm Is A Dancer suffered an odds-on defeat on his previous start at the course but the record was set straight after the 1-7 favourite claimed the Lenny Roberts Memorial Trophy Novices’ Hurdle by seven lengths to complete Nicholls’ and Cobden’s short-priced brace.

Tom George has a smart team under his care and Now Look At Me (8-11) looked to be another useful recruit when carrying the colours of leading owners Paul and Clare Rooney to victory on his debut in the concluding bumper.

Delight for Alexandra Dunn with 66-1 Wincanton winner
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