HORSE RACING - Givemefive books Cheltenham Festival place with emphatic win at Warwick - The Rugby Observer

HORSE RACING - Givemefive books Cheltenham Festival place with emphatic win at Warwick

GIVEMEFIVE maintain his unbeaten record over hurdles with an emphatic success at Warwick setting up a potential tilt at the JCB Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival in March.

The Holy Roman Emperor gelding also prompted celebrations over in America with Givemefive part owned by 2017 and 2018 US Open winner and 2018, 2019 and 2023 PGA Championship hero Brooks Koepka and 2010 US Open winner Graeme McDowell.

And Givemefive made it two from two since joining Harry Derham when following up his Market Rasen success by 18 lengths in the Hazelton Mountford Insurance Brokers Juvenile Hurdle.

Derham said: “I thought he had improved, but I was not expecting that. Paul (O’Brien) said not much will make the running and I said you ride a lot of winners from the front so go do that.

“At four out he (Paul O’Brien) was more confident than I was as he was carrying a penalty against smart horses, but he is obviously a smart horse.

“Graeme (McDowell), Brooks (Koepka) and Daniel Gambill (other part owner) are great guys and they were all watching the race in Florida. My WhatsApp has been going mad with messages after that.

“Entries close for the Triumph Hurdle tomorrow and I’m going to enter him after winning like that carrying a penalty.

“If he didn’t need to have another run then I would almost certainly run him in the Fred Winter (Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle).

“I’m not going to commit to anything now, but it is a nice problem to have.”

And several members of the Leicester Tigers squad received the perfect boost following the club’s Champions Cup defeat to Leinster after Either Or ran out a two and a quarter length winner of division one of the Welcombe Hills Vineyard Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle.

Katie Croft, who runs Canter Banter Racing with David Fehily, said of the Nicky Henderson-trained 11-8 chance: “Dave knows one of the Leicester lads quite well and he managed to get a few of them involved in this one.

“We were very confident coming into the race today as she has done everything nicely at home. Her jumping is her biggest asset and fences will be her forte in the future.”

Nigel Twiston-Davies and Sam Twiston-Davies teamed up to secure a 13.4-1 double after Smiling Getaway (13-8) landed division two of the two miles and three furlongs mares’ novices’ hurdle by eight lengths before Ballycamus (9-2) claimed a two and a half length success in the Novices’ Handicap Chase.


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