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Our first Cheltenham Festival winner

19-March-2016 0:00
in General
by Admin

Unowhatimeanharry provided us with our first success at the Cheltenham Festival with a superb victory in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle on Friday.

It was great to be so closely involved with the triumph of Rock On Ruby in the Champion Hurdle in my days as assistant to Paul Nicholls.
But Friday was a red letter day for all of our team at Manor Farm, Seaborough.

We bought Unowhatimeanharry last summer in the hope that he might win a maiden hurdle having leased him to the forty members of the Harry Fry Racing Club.

What he has achieved since then has surprised and delighted us all. After his fourth successive win of the season we planned to run him in the Pertemps Final at the Festival.

But we were forced into a re-think when the handicapper raised him to a new mark of 152. That is two pounds more than the official rating of Barters Hill, long time favourite for the Albert Bartlett.

It made sense to switch Unowhatimeanharry to the Albert Bartlett and he justified the decision with a typically brave run that saw him claim his finest success on the final, unforgiving hill.

He is not very big but what he lacks in size he more than makes up for with stamina, nimble jumping and a wonderfully gutsy attitude to racing.

As usual he was given a fine, patient ride by Noel Fehily who has been such a key member of our team since I started training.

The bonus on Friday was that around half of the Racing Club's forty members were on hand at Cheltenham to cheer him on.

I almost lost my voice cheering him on, too. His winning streak has been an unbelievable story for all of us.

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