Son comes through for McCoy
A review of the rest of the action from Saturday's meeting at Wetherby, where Tony McCoy carried Flemenson to victory.
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Odds-on backers were made to sweat in the Play The £1million Scoop6 Today Novices' Hurdle at Wetherby as the Jonjo O'Neill-trained Flemenson won an attritional affair under a typically power-packed Tony McCoy ride.
The Irish point-to-point scorer made a winning debut under Rules at Uttoxeter before filling the runner-up spot at Exeter and was a 4/5 favourite to get back on the winning trail in the two-mile-six-furlong contest.
The market-leader appeared in real trouble rounding the home turn, but McCoy got him back on an even keel in the straight before revving him up to challenge the front-running Sir Mangan.
Both horses were weary before jumping the final flight, but Flemenson found most on the run-in to win by three and three-quarter lengths.
"That was a right old slog," said O'Neill. "He didn't jump great. Whether that was the ground, I don't know, but he is normally a good bit better than that.
"He had a fracture in his hind leg after his last run, so hopefully he's all right in the morning. I think he'll sleep for a week after that!
"He'll be entered in a few races at Cheltenham. We'll see where the handicapper has him and make a plan from there."
No Planning galloped his rivals into submission in the Bet totequadpot With totepool Handicap Chase.
Sue Smith's consistent seven-year-old was the well-supported 6/4 favourite following a good run in defeat in December's Tommy Whittle Chase at Haydock and fenced fluently for Ryan Mania.
He appeared to have the measure of McMurrough when that one made a serious error three fences from home and unshipped Brian Hughes.
No Planning safely negotiated the remaining obstacles and stayed on dourly to come home with 15 lengths in hand over Doeslessthanme, giving Smith her fourth win in the last six renewals of this extended two-and-a-half-mile test.
"I'm not sure what would have happened if McMurrough had stood up, but our horse has done it nicely," said the trainer.
"He coped with the ground well, back over this shorter trip, and he's a nice little horse. Wetherby is our local track and we like to support it."
The application of blinkers helped Who Owns Me bounce back to form with a determined effort in the Download The totepool Mobile App Handicap Hurdle.
Charlie Mann's eight-year-old failed to get seriously competitive on his first four starts of the campaign and was a 17/2 chance for his latest assignment in the hands of Noel Fehily.
He was last of all exiting the back straight and receiving reminders, but as the front-runners began to falter, Who Owns Me got back on terms and kicked clear from the second last to seal a five-length triumph over Kilbree Chief.
"He's a horse who stays very well and he's quite a genuine horse, so it's surprising he needs blinkers," said Fehily. "They obviously didn't do him any harm as he showed a great attitude."
Jill Dawson's Palypso De Creek (6/4 favourite) claimed the CGA Foxhunter Trial for the second successive year.
Asked whether she would consider a tilt at the Foxhunter Chase at Cheltenham, Dawson said: "No. I don't pretend my geese are swans."
The concluding bumper went to the McCoy-ridden and Steve Gollings-trained 2/1 favourite Relic Rock.