Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Flyer Wins a Thriller for Double Honours

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Flyer Wins a Thriller for Double Honours

Article excerpt

Byline: By William Hayler

Geraghty takes victory for the second year

Moscow Flyer sent a record crowd wild with a sensational performance to settle an old score in the William Hill Tingle Creek Trophy at Sandown on Saturday.

The acoustics of the cavernous concrete grandstand made it sound like a primal scream as Barry Geraghty held his rivals at bay to win the prize for the second year running.

And the 10-year-old laid an ancient ghost to rest as he broke a sequence of form that had seen him fail to complete the course on every fourth start since he first went steeplechasing more than three years ago.

Sent off the 2-1 second-favourite, the Irish raider jumped to the front three fences from home and ran on strongly to defeat his rival Azertyuiop, the 5-6 favourite, by a length and a half, with Arkle Trophy winner Well Chief third.

Moscow Flyer, who unseated his rider when Azertyuiop took last season's Queen Mother Champion Chase, jumped off at the head of affairs under Geraghty but was soon passed by Cenkos, who set a furious pace.

Cenkos led heading into the back straight with Moscow Flyer second, watched closely by Ruby Walsh aboard Azertyuiop, who was settled in third.

Walsh kept Moscow Flyer in his sights over the Railway fences and for some way looked as if he might be able to overhaul him whenever he wanted. But a messy jump at the Pond fence cost him a vital length and the pair were never quite able to get to the winner who is unbeaten in his 16 completed jumps races.

Well Chief tracked the leaders but was also unable to outspeed Moscow Flyer and had to settle for third.

The hype leading up to the race had been intense but was proved entirely justified by both the race and a crowd of 16,300.

Geraghty, who had punched the air with sheer joy as he passed the winning post in front, was lapping it up. …

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