Sunday 19 August 2018

Watch: Davy Russell pays emotional tribute to late mother after guiding Presenting Percy to stunning success

14 March 2018; Jockey Davy Russell celebrates winning the RSA Steeple Chase on Presenting Percy on Day Two of the Cheltenham Racing Festival at Prestbury Park in Cheltenham, England. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile
14 March 2018; Jockey Davy Russell celebrates winning the RSA Steeple Chase on Presenting Percy on Day Two of the Cheltenham Racing Festival at Prestbury Park in Cheltenham, England. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile
14 March 2018; Presenting Percy, with Davy Russell up clears the last on their way to winning The RSA Steeple Chase on Day Two of the Cheltenham Racing Festival at Prestbury Park in Cheltenham, England. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Presenting Percy turned the RSA Insurance Novices' Chase into a procession to win at the Cheltenham Festival for the second successive year.

Having won the Pertemps Final 12 months ago, he has gone on to prove himself much better than a handicapper.

Trainer Pat Kelly is never one to shout from the rooftops and he has charted an unconventional path to Cheltenham this year, including a win back over hurdles, but he obviously knew what he had on his hands.

Davy Russell, extending his incredible record at the meeting, switched his mount off at the rear of the field and when he decided to join in towards the end of the back straight, he was absolutely cruising.

Monalee had taken up the running going well, but had no answer as Presenting Percy (5-2 favourite) scooted clear to beat Monalee by seven lengths. Al Boum Photo was booked for third when falling at the second-last, allowing Elegant Escape to snatch a place.

Ruby Walsh, who has only recently returned from a broken leg, was helped into the ambulance following the fall from Al Boum Photo.

Winning jockey Russell said: "I've underestimated this horse all along.

"People have really latched on to him. He's unimpressive to me, but, by God, he's some horse.

"Sometimes you're a fool and sometimes you're a hero, but it all worked out today.

"I've nothing but praise for the man (Kelly), he's a genius. We'll enjoy today."

Similar thoughts were echoed by delighted owner Philip Reynolds, who said: "The man (Kelly) is an absolute genius the way he trains horses.

"I can't believe it myself. It was so stressful watching it. It's more relief than anything else.

"I love this horse."

Recently, Russell and his family suffered the sad loss of his mother, and after the race, he paid an emotional tribute to her, while still on board of Presenting Percy.

"Look, they're all special, but Mam was the most outstanding woman. She rared six kids, and a business, along with my dad, and they'll be in floods of tears at home.

"She was a great woman. She was my mother. It's fantastic.

"She was a great woman"

Online Editors

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