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Holywell holds off Don Cossack to claim Mildmay Chase honours at Aintree

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Holywell and Tony McCoy win the Betfred Mobile Mildmay Novices Chase during Ladies Day of the Crabbie's Grand National 2014 Festival at Aintree

Holywell and Tony McCoy win the Betfred Mobile Mildmay Novices Chase during Ladies Day of the Crabbie's Grand National 2014 Festival at Aintree

Holywell and Tony McCoy win the Betfred Mobile Mildmay Novices Chase during Ladies Day of the Crabbie's Grand National 2014 Festival at Aintree

Holywell galloped his rivals into submission to run out an impressive winner of the Betfred Mobile Mildmay Novices' Chase at Aintree.

Jonjo O'Neill's smart hurdler took a while to get the hang of things over fences, but has hit top form since the turn of the year, winning at Catterick and Doncaster before striking in handicap company at the Cheltenham Festival for the second time.

Stepped up to Grade One level for the first time over the larger obstacles, Holywell was given an aggressive ride from the front under Tony McCoy and the 7-2 chance answered the champion jockey's every call.

His rivals were queuing up to challenge at the top of the home straight, but two more slick jumps from Holywell kept him in command and he began to assert onto the run to the final obstacle.

O'Neill's charge produced another extravagant leap to seal the deal and passed the post with 10 lengths in hand over Irish raider Don Cossack.

Wonderful Charm came through to finish third ahead of Many Clouds.

RSA Chase winner and 3-1 favourite O'Faolains Boy ran as though his Cheltenham exertions had taken their toll, weakening into fifth place.

In the opening race, Cheltenham Festival runner-up Josses Hill went one better with an authoritative display under Barry Geraghty in the International Festival For Business 2014 Top Novices' Hurdle at Aintree.

Having found only the hugely-impressive Vautour too strong in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Prestbury Park last month, the Nicky Henderson-trained Josses Hill was a 6-4 favourite for his Grade Two assignment on Merseyside.

The well-backed market-leader moved sweetly into the home straight, but Supreme fourth Sgt Reckless quickly loomed up as a big danger.

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Mick Channon's charge looked likely to come out on top after joining Josses Hill at the head of affairs after jumping the second last, but the Seven Barrows runner was in control jumping the final obstacle and stayed on best on the run-in to score by six lengths.

Irish raider King Of The Picts finished off his race strongly to pick up minor honours in third.

Geraghty said: "He's very genuine and he tries. He didn't travel and jump as well as I'd like and he's had a busy enough time, but he really responds.

"I knew I'd stay well and soon after AP (McCoy, on Sgt Reckless) joined me, I knew I had the measure of him.

"He met a very good horse at Cheltenham and I think he's a horse with a massive future over fences."


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