Friday 9 December 2016

AP McCoy soars to claim Ryanair Gold Cup glory at Fairyhouse

Published 05/04/2015 | 16:55

Tony McCoy and GILGAMBOA after their win for trainer Enda Bolger.
Photo HEALY RACING.
Tony McCoy and GILGAMBOA after their win for trainer Enda Bolger. Photo HEALY RACING.
FAIRYHOUSE 5-4-2015. The Ryanair Gold Cup. GILGAMBOA and Tony McCoy won for trainer Enda Bolger. Photo HEALY RACING.

Tony McCoy produced Gilgamboa with a perfectly-timed challenge to claim the Ryanair Gold Cup at Fairyhouse.

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Red-hot 5-4 favourite Gitane Du Berlais led her rivals a merry dance for much of the Grade One feature and turned for home still hard on the bridle, but Smashing jumped to the lead at the third-last.

Gitane Du Berlais battled back to dispute the lead after the next fence and the two looked set to fight out the finish, but the complexion of the race change dramatically from there on in.

McCoy kept persevering aboard Enda Bolger's Gilgamboa and asked for a huge leap at the last.

Tony McCoy and GILGAMBOA after their win for trainer Enda Bolger.
Photo HEALY RACING.
Tony McCoy and GILGAMBOA after their win for trainer Enda Bolger. Photo HEALY RACING.

The 7-1 shot responded generously to land in front and galloped all the way to the line to seal victory and give his jockey a Fairyhouse double.

The Tullow Tank looked to have no chance two out, but finished with a rare rattle and was, in the end, only beaten half a length.

Smashing just beat Gitane Du Berlais into third spot.

Valseur Lido was disappointing, while Apache Stronghold unseated Paul Carberry a long way from the finish.

Bolger said: "Tony has ridden a few for me but that's the first winner we've had together.

"It's great to win a race like this and to have that man on top.

"The ground was a big help. He just wasn't right the last day and Mark Walsh looked after him.

"I don't know whether he'll go to Punchestown for the three-mile novice or not.

"I won this (formerly known as Powers Gold Cup) before as a rider in 1983 on a horse called Step Together.

"I was only 19 and beat Frank Berry, which was a feather in my cap."

McCoy said: "Fair play to Enda. He was a bit disappointing in Navan last time but Enda had him in top shape.

"I'm delighted to ride a big winner for him before I retire.

"He might be horse for the Lexus at Christmas if he has his conditions.

"He'll be a nice ride for somebody, but it won't be me."

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