John Smith's Melling Chase (Grade 1) 2m 4f

  • (5yo+, 2m 4f, Class 1, 8 runners)
  • Winner £98,472 2nd £37,100 3rd £18,568 4th £9,275 5th £4,655 6th £2,328 7th £1,155 8th £595
  • Going: Good, Good to Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 5m 3.70s
  • Off time: 15:07:08

Full Result

15:05 Aintree
Pos Dist Horse Trainer Age Weight Jockey SP
1st 2 Finian's Rainbow (IRE) N J Henderson 9 11-10 B J Geraghty 13/8f
SP 13/8f Tracked leaders in 3rd, hit 10th, went 2nd after 4 out, challenged 3 out, led after 2 out, pushed out to go clear run-in opened 7/4 £7000-£4000(x3) £3500-£2000 £1750-£1000(x12) £1400-£800(x3) £32500-£20000
2nd 7 8 Wishfull Thinking P J Hobbs 9 11-10 t R Johnson 15/2
SP 15/2 In rear, mistake 10th, went 3rd and headway after 4 out, led before 2 out, headed soon after, ridden before last, kept on and always well held by winner opened 9/1 touched 7/1
3rd 13 1 Albertas Run (IRE) Jonjo O'Neill 11 11-10 A P McCoy 11/4
SP 11/4 With leader, hit 8th, hit 10th, led 4 out, headed before 2 out, weakened before last opened 9/4 £1100-£400(x2)
4th 3 Forpadydeplasterer (IRE) T Cooper 10 11-10 p B J Cooper 12/1
SP 12/1 Held up towards rear, mistake 5th, headway before 4 out, hit 3 out, one pace and no impression
5th 6 7 Pure Faith (IRE) P Bowen 8 11-10 T J O'Brien 80/1
SP 80/1 Held up mid-division and keen, ridden and weakened before 3 out opened 100/1
6th 13 6 Poquelin (FR) P F Nicholls 9 11-10 R Walsh 5/1
SP 5/1 Led, mistake and headed 4 out, soon weakened opened 6/1
7th ½ 5 Kauto Stone (FR) P F Nicholls 6 11-10 P Carberry 12/1
SP 12/1 Held up mid-division, weakened before 4 out
PU 4 Kalahari King (FR) Ferdy Murphy 11 11-10 N Fehily 33/1
SP 33/1 Behind, weakened from 5 out, soon tailed off, pulled up before 3 out opened 28/1

Betting Breakdown

Tote Win £2.70 Tote Place £1.10 £2.20 £1.50 Straight Forecast £14.30 Exacta £16.30 Trifecta £50.70 Swingers 1&2 £3.80, 2&3 £3.80, 1&3 £1.80

Jackpot £76,491.55 carried forward to Aintree, 14th Apr
Placepot £33.30, Pool: £454402.7, 9946.44 winning tickets
Quadpot £22.10, Pool: £18309.83, 610.59 winning tickets

Analysis

A hugely impressive display from the reigning Champion Chaser FINIAN'S RAINBOW, who took the step up in trip to two and half miles comfortably in his stride. He had a slight scare on the way to the start as he crashed through some plastic rails under Barry Geraghty but that was more a show of his current well-being as the race itself went much more smoothly. He sat in third place behind Poquelin and Albertas Run with that duo setting some decent fractions at the head of affairs. The winner moved closer approaching the cross-fence and as the pacesetters began to tread water it was Wishfull Thinking who became the biggest threat. However, the winner had his measure by the last and he drew powerfully clear to score in ready fashion. Connections now have all the options open and could even consider three miles in the King George for him at Kempton over Christmas. Those decisions are for a later date as his trainer Nicky Henderson said he now retires to summer quarters "with all the medals". Philip Hobbs' horses have bounced back this week so perhaps it was no surprise to see Wishfull Thinking run such a good race. He took a horrible fall at Cheltenham and it highlights the skill of his handler to have him back in such good form so soon. He swept into contention from the rear on the run to three out but could not sustain his run against such a classy rival. That said, this was an excellent effort as the rest were well beaten off and headed by Albertas Run. The tactics were clear from AP McCoy as his plan was to try and test Finian's Rainbow stamina to the full. He had no more to give after three out but kept on gamely enough to hold on from Forpadytheplasterer for third spot. He did not jump with his usual fluency and perhaps the rain-softened ground this week and the sharp shower just before the off did not aid his cause. Poquelin was backed beforehand but paid the price for setting such a stiff gallop as the remainder never seriously got involved.