Camping Ground wins on first start for Gary Moore

The news from Fontwell on Sunday, where Camping Ground made a fine impression on his first start for Gary Moore.

After joining the Lower Beeding handler around a month ago from Robert Walford, the seven-year-old took apart a useful field in the Grade Two prize to open his account for the campaign. However, his victory led to a possible difference of opinion between trainer and owners as to where Camping Ground might be heading next.

Disputing the lead from the start, the 9-1 chance pressed on into a clear advantage after the fourth flight, before galloping his rivals into the ground to cross the line a 29-length winner from Le Rocher in the two-mile-three-furlong contest.

The winner was cut to 25/1 for the Stayers' Hurdle by Sky Bet, who also trimmed him to the 16/1 for the Coral Cup.

Moore said: "His work had been good. When we have worked him I've been very careful to mind him. If he turned up as he did in the Relkeel when he won we knew he would win today, and he turned up similar to that day.

"We've played around with him. We've done everything we could and Robert Walford would have done exactly the same thing. Maybe it is just a change of scenery that has done him good.

"We've treated him like a good horse. A lot of effort has gone into him, believe me, from the staff at home.

"I know the owner is pretty keen to go for the Stayers' Hurdle. I think two and a half is his trip. He has got a very high cruising speed and he galloped them into the ground. I think three miles would be pushing him in my opinion."

The victory provided jockey Joshua Moore with his first success since returning from a lay-off following a fall at Huntingdon on Boxing Day.

He said: "He did it well. He has enjoyed himself. We know what he has been capable of before, as he showed at Cheltenham. Things have been perfect for him today. He has had his own way and been able to wind it up at his own tempo.

"The ground was lovely and that trip and track just suited him. That's what is impressive, as he has carried 11st 11lb.

"The whole way I just let him enjoy himself. He was probably a bit tired coming down to the last. It will certainly have done his confidence a bit of good, getting his head in front again.

"He is a very happy horse. I rode him in one bit of work and he worked very well. We hoped a change of scenery might help him out and that is what it has done."

Larry (11/2) completed a first treble of the season for the trainer when making an emotional winning debut in the concluding bumper.

After teaming up with Jamie Moore to take the novice hurdle with Crystal Lad (5/1), the pair struck again after the four-year-old stuck to the task well to defeat Puppet Warrior by half a length.

Moore said: "Larry Streeter (who the horse is named after) part-owned Violet Dancer with Dave Bessell and we were all at a party around Dave's house all having a good time. I went home and in the morning I had a phone call telling me that Larry had died.

"Violet Dancer had been a great horse to him and he was a very keen racegoer and he was there every time he raced.

"It was very kind of Jeremy (Hinds) who is part of Galloping On The South Downs Partnership to give Dave a share and let him run in the colours of Violet Dancer."

He added: "That's my first treble of the season. I'm lucky to have three winners in a week, let alone in one day."

Colin Tizzard continued his near perfect season after Wizards Bridge moved him on to the 50 winner mark for the campaign with victory in the totequadpot Handicap Chase.

With the final preparations being applied to his Cheltenham Festival big guns, the Milborne Port handler equalled his seasonal best total thanks to the eight-year-old's second win over fences.

Held on until late, by Tom O'Brien the well-backed 2/1 favourite mastered long-time leader The Italian Yob by two lengths.

Tizzard said: "That's 50 for the season. A lot of my family are here and my mother has got a bit in this one.

"He is a nice boy. On his form from Ascot last week I suppose he was entitled to win really. He is probably a horse we can alternate a little bit between fences and hurdles."

Nicky Henderson recalled fond memories spent with Josh Gifford after Kilcrea Vale claimed his second win over fences with a two-length victory in the novice chase named in honour of the late trainer.

The Seven Barrows handler said: "We had some wonderful days together. It didn't matter if it was on a racecourse or a golf course. It didn't matter where you were with Josh, as it was always going to be fun. It is great winning a race in memory of a great friend."

Of the 10/11 winner, he said: "I was worried bringing him back in distance as he doesn't need it, but nor did As De Mee.

"He will probably go up in trip, but the good thing is he is putting races together as that is three nice runs over fences. You always learn a lot going around tracks like this. He is in the JLT and he could run in that, but Alan Spence is not fussed if he didn't. Aintree might be a more suitable plan at the moment."

Mon Parrain registered his first win in more than two years to book a potential return trip back over the Grand National fences with victory in the hunter chase.

Building on his run at Taunton last month the 11-year-old coasted home by 26 lengths to give winning jockey David Maxwell back-to-back wins in the race having taken it 12 months ago on Mendip Express.

Winning trainer Paul Nicholls said: "He should have won really. He ran at Taunton first time out and is always better for a run. David has got two or three nice horses that he has bought for himself to ride.

"He has just brought Unioniste that he will ride in the Kim Muir , and Port Melon, who will run in a few handicaps. He might go to Aintree as he ran in the Topham a few years ago." 

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