McCoy and 'Rose' prove thorn in side of rivals
HAVING been thwarted on a well-supported Jonjo O'Neill inmate in the opener, Tony McCoy ensured he left Wetherby with a winner by capturing the day's feature on Rose Of The Moon.
Trained by Cork native David O'Meara, the galloping grey is now in line for a possible tilt at the Aintree Grand National in April.
McCoy and his willing partner knuckled down to their task up the straight as they engaged in a duel with Donald McCain's Real Milan. By the final fence, Rose Of The Moon (3/1) was well on top and McCoy eased nine lengths clear of Jason Maguire's mount.
Earlier, Maguire and McCain were on the mark in the staying handicap hurdle with Rocky Stone (11/2). The former winning point-to-pointer showed plenty of stamina from the final flight to edge out Big Sound by half a length.
McCoy was expected to land the opening juvenile hurdle aboard O'Neill's Rayak, but he had to play second fiddle to the John Ferguson-trained Certification (5/4 favourite), which made all the running for Denis O'Regan. However, O'Neill still managed to leave with a winner as Catching On (11/2) took the finale under Richie McLernon. Philip Hobbs and Richard Johnson were also on the mark as Tiqris (5/4 favourite) took the novice hurdle.