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Cheltenham Festival hero Benefficient forced to retire

Published 27/03/2014 | 08:11

Benefficient ridden by Bryan Cooper
Benefficient ridden by Bryan Cooper

Tony Martin's 2013 Cheltenham Festival hero Benefficient has been retired.

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Also a winner of three Grade Ones at Leopardstown, including the Paddy Power Dial-A-Bet Chase earlier this season, he earned his owners over £200,000.

Benefficient last ran in the Ryanair Chase two weeks ago but was pulled up.

In a post on Facebook, New York-based Aidan 'Red' Shiels and Niall Reilly said: "To all our friends in horse racing and Benefficient fans.

"It is with great sorrow that we have to report that Benefficient has run his last race after sustaining a serious leg injury.

"Three years ago we began a fairytale trip with Benefficeint which saw us in March 2013 reach the pinnacle of National Hunt racing at Cheltenham when we walked Benefficient into the winner's enclosure a champion.

"To everyone who made this great journey possible, from our vet Ned Gowing, jockeys Ruby Walsh, Paul Townend and of course Bryan Cooper, our trainer Tony Martin and all his staff who put in all the hard work behind the scenes, from the bottom of our hearts we thank you for everything."

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