Father floored by Highland Lodge

  • Last Updated: December 15 2012, 17:06 GMT

Highland Lodge overturned odds-on favourite Our Father in a head-to-head battle for the Ryman Stationery Novices' Chase at Cheltenham.

Highland Lodge jumps to victory at Cheltenham
Highland Lodge jumps to victory at Cheltenham

The first two had the race between them from a long way out, but jockey Barry Geraghty seized the initiative from his rival with a big jump to edge ahead at the fourth-last fence and from that point Our Father was never quite able to get back on terms.

Franking the form of his previous third to Harry Topper at Newbury, the 2/1 chance was cut from 33/1 to 16/1 for the RSA Chase by Sky Bet on the strength of this performance.

Highlighting the testing conditions at the track, the winner's time was nearly a minute above standard for the course.

"He stays and stays and stays and he jumps really well, just like the trainer told me he did," said Geraghty. "I got a good response from him at the fourth last and from the third last I felt things were looking good. He stays and he loves soft ground so maybe, long-term, he could be a Welsh National horse."

Click here for completely free £10 bet with Sky Bet & £5 free every week