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Press Release 28th January 2023 Cheltenham

By Graham Clark & Nick Seddon

Trainer Syd Hosie enjoyed the biggest success of his training career when Rock My Way (13-2) took the honours by a length and a half in the Grade Two Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham today. 

Syd Hosie said: “We have done it today and that was great, but how good is Nigel Twiston-Davies’ horse (Weveallbeencaught) that is what I want to know, and we will find out in Ireland next week.

"Speaking to Tom (Scudamore) there will probably step him up in trip. He wanted a bit more of a lead and he got to the front early enough and he had a look around. We could have done with a bit more of a pace there. We had Way Out in the race as well and at home he runs all over this horse every day. I might need to put a longer gallop on!

“The previous time I didn’t have a clue how he would get on as he came from the point-to-point field. This time I thought if we can get him in the top three I won’t look stupid for the entries we have made for the Ballymore and the Albert Bartlett and I’m glad about that. We will get him home and see where he is really.

“We have had a Cheltenham hunter chase winner and that to me was the pinnacle but this today this means a lot to me. It is nice to do it at Cheltenham on Trials Day. I used to come to Trials Day and be with my mates in the bottom bar and I always said to them when we start to win some money we might have a go at this and here we are.”

Dan Skelton, trainer of the runner-up Pembroke (5-4 Favourite), said: “That was a really good run. Look, I thought we’d win beforehand and I wasn’t afraid to say how much we thought of him, but on that ground the trip perhaps just exposed him a little. With a better jump at the last we’d perhaps been a bit closer but he’s run very creditably, his jumping can improve. We were going everywhere with him due to the weather and this just ended up being the one we came for in the end. I don’t know what to do with him in the spring yet, he’s got a little cut which is only superficial but we’ll wait and double check he’s ok before making firm plans.”

Michael Scudamore, trainer of the third-placed Mofasa (14-1), said: “That was a great run considering we gave away weight to the first two horses, so I’m really pleased. He ran so poorly at Newcastle last time that it’s just nice to put a line through that and Luca was pleased with him. He said he had a horrible run all the way through and thought he could and should have finished closer with a clearer run. I’m delighted to see him back though and he’s proven he’s good enough to compete at this level. Coming back here in March is a possibility, but we’ve got plenty of time to think about it. He’s a big boy for chasing next year and it wouldn’t be the worst idea to put him away for that either, so there’s lots of options and lots to talk about. If anybody had to beat us though I’m delighted it was Tom (Scudamore) – he can get the beers in later!”

The concluding SSS Super Alloys Handicap Hurdle saw champion trainer Paul Nicholls bring up a 102-1 treble on Festival Trials Day when Hacker Des Places (4-1) scored by a neck under Angus Cheleda.

Paul Nicholls said: “I think the way he travels now and better race with a better pace will suit him. Angus might have learnt his lesson there as he was in front 10 minutes too soon really but he just kept galloping.

"He will have a five pound penalty for the Betfair Hurdle and Angus can take that off so I suspect that is where we will go. He has been entered up loads of time but it has been off everywhere we want to go. We felt if we are going to win a big one we need to get a race into him. He has got other options aside from the Betfair Hurdle as there is also the Morebattle at Kelso. I think he could be a Martin Pipe horse but you would also stick him in the County Hurdle as he has got loads of boot.

"I’ve left plenty to work on so I’m pleased with that. He is amazingly consistent. He has done really well and has improved enormously.”

Winning rider Angus Cheleda said: “I thought I got there a bit too soon really and then the race fell apart at two out, so I thought I’d kick off the bend and he’s galloped all the way up the hill. It’s my first winner at Cheltenham for the boss (Paul Nicholls) so it’s a special moment.”

The attendance at Cheltenham today came to 21,054 – the largest seen on Festival Trials Day since 2017.


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