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Last Updated: Friday, 18 March, 2005, 17:38 GMT
Friday at Cheltenham
All the action as it happened from the fourth and final day of the Cheltenham Festival meeting.

History was created at Prestbury Park as the newly-extended Festival entered a fourth day for the first time.

But a huge crowd packed in to enjoy some glorious sunshine and some excellent racing.

The day's feature race, the Cheltenham Gold Cup was won in a thrilling finish by Irish challenger Kicking King to give jockey Barry Geraghty his second big race win of the week after Moscow Flyer's success.


1720 - Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle (2m 1f)
1. Fontanesi (T J Murphy) 16-1
2. Stance (D J Casey) 11-1
3. Borora (T Doyle) 200-1
4. Grande Jete (M Foley) 14-1
30 ran

Timmy Murphy and trainer Martin Pipe finish the Cheltenham Festival on a high when bottom weight Fontanesi wins.

Grand Jete looked like landing the spoils for Nicky Henderson when he powered into the lead between the last two flights, but he made a mistake at the final hurdle.

He immediately lost the advantage and it was left to Fontanesi to go on and win by two lengths from his rivals.

1640 - Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Steeplechase (2m f)
1. Fota Island (P Carberry) 7-1
2. Bambi de L'Orme (G Lee) 16-1
3. Caracciola (M Foley) 16-1
4. Tysou (M A Fitzgerald) 10-1
24 ran

A bold display by Paul Carberry who guided the well-handicapped Fota Island to a decisive win.

Carberry, who was leading at the time after swooping two fences from home, had to act quickly at the last fence to avoid a loose horse

But he guided his mount to safety and finished strongly up the hill ahead of Graham Lee's Bambi de L'Orme.

Two of Nicky Henderson's three horses Caracciola and Tysou were both in contention in the race named after his father and finished third and fourth.

1600 - Christie's Foxhunter Chase (3m 2f)
1. Sleeping Night (Mr CJ Sweeney) 7-2f
2. Foly Pleasant (Mr R Burton) 20-1
3. Placid Man (Ms A Embiricos) 14-1
24 ran

The well-fancied favourite Sleeping Night gives Irish jockey Colman Sweeney his first ever Cheltenham success in the day's amateur riders race.

After the fall of Wipper with four fences to go, Lord Atterbury took over the lead but he was soon swamped by Sleeping Night and Foly Pleasant, who quickly moved clear.

Sleeping Night, trained by Paul Nicholls, took over the lead but Foly Pleasant, owned and trained by Nick Shutts, was always looking dangerous.

But although the winner hung badly right up the hill, Sweeney managed to keep him on course to the line for the win.

1515 - Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup (3m 2f)
1. Kicking King (B Geraghty) 4-1f
2. Take The Stand (A Dobbin) 25-1
3. Sir Rembrandt (A Thornton) 12-1
15 ran. Dist: 5, 8

The favourite Kicking King puts in a superb display under the guidance of jockey Barry Geraghty to win his first Cheltenham Gold Cup.

The horse, who had been pulled out of the race after suffering with illness before being reinstated, was in superb form to give trainer Tom Taaffe a famous win.

Taaffe's father Pat rode the legendary Arkle to win three Gold Cups in the 1960's.

Geraghty brought his mount to the front with about five fences to go and although Take The Stand put in a brave display, there was only going to be one winner.

Sir Rembrandt, second behind Best Mate last year, just managed to hold on for third ahead of Royal Auclair.

1435 - Brit Insurance Novices' Hurdle (3m)
1. Moulin Riche (R Thornton) 9-1
2. Over The Creek (TJ Murphy) 5-1
3. Brewster (R Johnson) 5-4f
18 ran. Dist: 2, nk

Robert Thornton makes it two wins out of two for the day when the Francois Doumen-trained Moulin Riche stays on well for victory.

Richard Johnson had committed his mount Brewster from a long way out but he couldn't stay in front after being overtaken by Bob Bob Bobbin two out.

But Thornton brought his mount through well and moved to challenge Bob Bob Bobbin approaching the final fence.

He jumped the last strongly and held on with Over The Creek edging out the well-backed favourite Brewster for second just before the line.

1400 - JCB Triumph Hurdle (2m 1f)
1. Penzance (R Thornton) 9-1
2. Faasel (A Dobbin) 7-1
3. Akilak (G Lee) 7-2f
4. Cerium (R Walsh) 8-1
23 ran. Dist: hd, 8

Penzance held on against the challenge of Faasel in a thrilling finish to claim the Triumph Hurdle.

The impressive Alan King-trained four year old took the lead between the final two fences after being well placed throughout the race and jumping superbly.

Penzance and Faasel, ridden by Tony Dobbin, accelerated away from the rest of the field coming to the last and jumped it almost together.

Penzance pulled clear but although Faasel never gave up and battled hard he just couldn't get the better of the winner with the favourite Akilak well back in third.


A celebratory race meeting at Lingfield Park racecourse marks 20 years of horse racing on its all-weather track.



SEE ALSO
Cheltenham day four photos
18 Mar 05 |  Photo Galleries



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