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Pauling and Jones net treble as Henry’s Friend wins Reynoldstown Chase

Henry’s Friend saw off Kilbeg King to secure a stunning double for Ben Jones and Ben Pauling in the Sodexo Live! Reynoldstown Novices’ Chase at Ascot.

Kilbeg King finished second, with Apple Away some way further back in third..

Brave Kingdom started the Grade Two contest the brightest, racing in front despite jumping slightly left for Harry Cobden. Nicholls’ gelding was closely followed by favourite Apple Away and Kilbeg King for the opening 10 fences, before a Brave Kingdom blunder lost him momentum.

An obstacle later, it was Apple Away’s turn to make an error, getting in too tight and allowing Henry’s Friend to come into his own.

Ben Jones’ charge started to come on strong three out in second to Apple Away before seizing the initiative two from home. Kilbeg King and Sam Twiston-Davies fought bravely to the end but couldn’t compete with Henry’s Friend, whose first time cheekpieces did the trick.

Henry's Friend was the unlikely winner of the Reynoldstown Chase at Ascot
Image: Henry’s Friend was the unlikely winner of the Reynoldstown Chase at Ascot

Ben Pauling said: “He didn’t jump well enough early doors and it was fortunate for him they didn’t go much of a gallop.

“I thought they would go a right gallop and if they had done he wouldn’t have been in it. But he was brave from the back of the last and his jumping got better and he keeps improving.

“I thought he was well handicapped, but I just thought he would be better off in a smaller field. I’m thrilled because he had to improve and he has.

“He wants every yard (of three miles) and he will be a lovely staying chaser in time. Stamina would never be a worry for me with this lad.

“He’s got an entry at Cheltenham in the amateur chase, but I doubt he wants to go there after that – that looked a bit of a ding-dong and to go there so quickly might be stupid.

“We might look at Aintree for him or something like that, but I think that will do for now.”

The result has seen Apple Away drift out to 40/1 for the Brown Advisory Novices Chase at Cheltenham from an initial price of 16/1.

Pic Roc steals the show

Pic Roc pulled off an impressive success in the opening race of Ascot’s Saturday proceedings, defying an 11/2 starting price to be first past the post.

Harry Cobden’s Inthewaterside began prominently in this Ascot Shop Novices’ Hurdle (GBB Race) (Class 2) despite appearing unsettled before the off, leading from the opening exchanges with Pic Roc and Vincenzo for company.

Pic Roc triumphed in the opening race at Ascot
Image: Pic Roc triumphed in the opening race at Ascot

Long-striding, the favourite looked good for victory turning right-handed until the penultimate hurdle, when Pic Roc mounted a challenge for Ben Jones and Ben Pauling.

Phantomofthepoints fought valiantly to stay in touch with the leaders but could only watch as Pic Roc and Inthewaterside battled it out to the line.

Eventually, Jones’ charge stayed on the strongest and won the contest by around two lengths leading Cobden ruing a missed opportunity to extend his Champion Jockey title lead.

Mothill denies Pauling and Jones four-timer

Mothill looked to have denied Ben Pauling and Ben Jones an improbable hat-trick with victory by the barest of margins in the Thoroughbred Industry Employee Awards Handicap Hurdle.

Jockey Joe Anderson triumphed in the face of adversity for the second time this season after he dropped his whip after two out, but steadied his charge to lead again in the final strides. Bad was pipped to the post by a short head, with Arqoob claiming a place late on in third.

Mothill was the 18/1 winner of this Ascot Class Two
Image: Mothill was the 18/1 winner of this Ascot Class Two

Jones and Pauling would have to wait just over an hour and a half for the achievement to be realised on an astonishing day for the duo.

Cobden extends Champion Jockey advantage

Harry Cobden extended his Champion Jockey title lead with victory in the Injured Jockeys Fund Ambassadors Programme Swinley Handicap Chase aboard Threeunderthrufive.

Shan Blue began the contest in front despite iffy jumping in the opening gambit, with Threeunderthrufive nicely positioned in second going into the straight for the first time. Rapper sat third whilst the well fancied Larry was held up as the back marker.

Threeunderthrufive's success saw Cobden stretch his lead over Sean Bowen
Image: Threeunderthrufive’s success saw Cobden stretch his lead over Sean Bowen

Cobden and Threeunderthrufive experienced difficulties going over the 14th fence, which allowed Victtorino to close the gap in third.

Shan Blue outjumped Threeunderthrufive four out but Nicholls’ nine-year-old regained his ground and mounted a full-scale challenge with two left to jump. Rapper tried to influence what appeared to be a two-horse race in the final exchanges, but Threeunderthrufive stole a march going over the last and scored comfortably.

Rapper did manage to salvage second, with Shan Blue the third best this time around.

Anno Power bolts up in bumper

Anno Power showcased on impressive turn of foot to win the British EBF Mares’ Open National Hunt Flat Race in the final race of the day for Johnny Burke and Harry Fry, becoming the only favourite to justify his market position all afternoon.

Nala The Lioness finished second for Harry Cobden, with Khutulun Khan next in third.

The race began at a a typically slow pace, with Moet At Upton adopting the leadership followed by Nala The Lioness. A pace increase finally arrived with around four furlongs to go, and Cobden’s charge looked good for victory heading down the middle of the straight.

Johnny Burke had other ideas and nudged Anno Power into life against the running rail. Harry Fry’s Mare bolted up down the inside to win out in eye-catching fashion.

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