Cill Anna showed great determination to take Listed honours in the 888Sport Take ‘Em On Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at Doncaster.
The 4-6 favourite, trained by Paul Nicholls, had to fight all the way to land the odds, as Ziggy Rose put up a spirited battle over the extended three miles in testing and windy conditions.
Cill Anna certainly had to dig deep, but she kept finding for Harry Cobden to see off Ziggy Rose by half a length, in the process denying jockey Paddy Brennan a treble after he won the first two races on the card.
Nicholls’ assistant, Harry Derham, said: “I was impressed with her attitude. Early on I didn’t think she was travelling with her usual zest, but her jumping kept her in it throughout the race. In the end she was extremely tough.
“I’d have preferred if it wasn’t quite as close. Credit to both mares.
“She probably found the ground quite hard work. It was a real tough stamina test in the end, but she’s very genuine and some good jumps in the straight put her in good stead.
“When Harry asked her for everything after the last she delivered.”
Cobden said: “It was loose (ground) and they were actually getting through it. She’s quite good, she’s getting better.
“She’ll jump a fence. She had loads left coming to the last and jumped out of my hands. She stays, too, which is good.”