What a shot - winner, no. 3, Arabella Boy heads through the water splash with Bostons Angel & Spiker The Biker
©Healy Racing Photos
He may have been without representation in the cross-country event at Cheltenham yesterday but Enda Bolger was back in his normal spot, the number one berth, after Punchestown's Crystal Cup Trial Risk Of Thunder Steeplechase today.
Some of the runners followed the leader, Lord Nellerie (disqualified after finishing 10th), on the wrong course but not Nina Carberry on Bolger's Arabella Boy. Indeed all the market fancies still held their chance as the runners approached the business end and at the conclusion of an exciting finish, Arabella Boy had three parts of a length in hand over Bostons Angel. The pair left Shakervilz thirteen lengths back in third.
Bolger commented: "This horse has been so frustrating but Nina's always had faith in him.
"We'll stick at this game now. We've been so lucky over the years in cross-country races – we've had so many good horses.
"This fellow seems to have been around for a long time but he's still only seven. Hopefully he'll go to Cheltenham now in December and he'll be back here in February, then the Cheltenham Festival and then the La Touche."
The Stewards were in action afterwards, handing a 7-day ban to Evanna McCutcheon (rider of Lord Nellerie) for taking the wrong course and continuing on.
Philip Enright (Its Only A Mist) and J J Slevin (Lydon House) both got 4 days. That sanction was less than McCutcheon's because they both pulled up.
Meanwhile Johnny Cullen (Long Strand) and Ciaran Murphy (Im Cool Too) escaped suspension because they turned around and went the right way then.
(AM & EM)