Ask Ben was an unexpected 50-1 champ of “The French Furze” Novices’ Hurdle at Newcastle.
Supported by Weatherbys Racing Bank, the Class Two occasion has been won by some fair sorts as the years progressed – including resulting Gold Cup champ Native River in 2014.
Prepared by Graeme McPherson, the five-year-old had been second in his latest point-to-point, behind a pony who won at Hereford this week, however he was required to come on significantly for the run.
Dan Skelton’s Beakstown and Brian Ellison’s Windsor Park had wins and experience under their belts, while Lord Du Mesnil put the pace to the race, however it was Ask Ben who won in a sweeping wrap up by a head.
“We came here in light of the fact that it was a little field and their was prize-cash down to 6th, everything he does is jog and hop,” said McPherson.
“To be completely forthright, he’d scarcely set the world land at home, yet it was pleasant to see the pony who beat him in a point win a few days ago (Danny Whizzbang).
“As this was not expected, I didn’t have £1 every route on him. I’ll need to go home and view the PC to perceive what we do straightaway.
Two grays set out in the Weatherbys General Stud Book “Early on” Juvenile Hurdle and they battled out the complete – however when Style De Vole (2-5 top pick) and Oi The Clubb Oi’S gone too far they were shrouded in mud.
Nicky Henderson’s Style De Vole inevitably picked up the high ground, despite the fact that Barry Geraghty’s mount at that point needed to endure a stewards’ request having conveyed Ian Williams’ sprinter over the track.
“It’s really tiring ground and he was simply hanging,” said Geraghty.
Talking from Newbury, Henderson stated: “I guess it was somewhat harder than it ought to have been, yet it is just the second time he has seen a racecourse. Mind you, a great deal of the others were the equivalent, as it was an early on race.
“He has not been in that long and he came over in the mid year looking extremely French. He came and had a run at Newbury and I figured he may have been straight enough.
“He has done himself well, as he had put on a great deal of weight. Every one of these steeds are going ahead for their runs.”
Sandy Thomson’s Dimple (9-1) hopped with energy for Sean Quinlan to win the Equine Products UK Handicap Chase.
An Irish point victor, he indicated little in two begins for Iain Jardine however Thomson perhaps clarified why.
“When he kept running in a guard at Ayr he got free and got a cut in his bum. When he returned from David’s (Armstrong, proprietor) this year we detected an irregularity on his bum and it was a touch of plastic,” said Thomson.
“It had been stuck in there for a long time so may clarify why he’s been dubious to prepare. Ideally he’s over his issues.”
Polydora (15-8 top pick) made all in the GVA Building Newcastle’s Future Chase for Tom Lacey and Alan Johns.