• Racing/
  • Jezki Slams Future Champions Field

Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m

  • (4yo+, 2m, Class 1, 9 runners)
  • Winner €52,000 2nd €15,200 3rd €7,200 4th €2,400
  • Going: Soft, Yielding to Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 3m 57.70s
  • Off time: 14:00:22
  • Last Updated: December 27 2012, 19:24 GMT

Jezki was a hugely-impressive winner of the Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown.

Jezki is clear of his rivals over the last
Jezki is clear of his rivals over the last

Jessica Harrington's four year old had won all three of his previous starts over hurdles and enhanced his glowing reputation with a smooth success in the two-mile Grade One contest.

Held up in fourth by Robbie Power, spotting the first three a lead of around half a dozen lengths, he was always travelling well as was main market rival Waaheb in rear.

The latter's inexperience on ground deemed too testing for him showed with a couple of novicey mistakes, notably when losing several lengths at the second last.

But it's hard to believe that the result would have been any different had Tony McCoy's mount hurdled that flight fluently as Power always appeared to have plenty of horse underneath him

The long-time leader Sizing Rio began to backpedal leaving Bright New Dawn to momentarily head the field as Power waited to press the button.

Once he did, the 11/8 favourite quickened readily clear to beat the rallying Waaheb by six lengths with Bright New Dawn back in third.

Harrington said: "I was absolutely thrilled. He won more impressively there than he did in Fairyhouse, he never even came off the bridle.

"Probably that slightly better ground helped him and he just loves going left-handed, he's definitely better left-handed. They went a right good gallop, which was brilliant. Cheltenham is the plan, we need to get him there in one piece.

"He will probably take in the Deloitte Novice Hurdle on his way there. The better the ground, the better for him."

Power said: "That was very easy. The went very quick early on and I didn't get into my stride until halfway down the back.

"I wasn't happy with him on the softest part of the track but from three or four out I always cantering and I was taking a pull the whole time.

"I ended up in front a bit soon but in fairness to the horse, as soon as I gave him a squeeze he lengthened away and I couldn't believe the turn of foot he had.

"He's a very good horse. The better the ground, the better he's going to be. That's the best ground he's had all year and that's the best performance he's put up all year."

Stan James make Jezki their 6/1 clear favourite for the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham, clipping him from 10/1 but he's a 7/1 chance with Sky Bet from the same price.

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