Sean Curran notches up a double at Southwell
TRAINER Sean Curran notched up a double at Southwell, with the victory of Zelos Diktator (16-1) in the £32 Bonus At 32Red.com Handicap Hurdle particularly noteworthy for his amateur jockey Mikey Hamill as it was his first ride under Rules.
Zelos Diktator drew clear with favourite Feisty Lass from some way out but kept on too strongly for that rival and despite idling after the last beat Qualitee by a length and a quarter.
Hamill has been riding on the point-to-point circuit.
Jason Maguire did the steering on Curran's Sergeant Dick (5-6 favourite), who made all in the 32Red.com "National Hunt" Maiden Hurdle.
Aidan Coleman may have drawn a blank at the Festival last week but his good season continued with the victory of Mentallist (evens favourite) in the Weatherbys Hamilton Insurance Handicap Chase.
For a long way he looked like coming off second best to the Sam Thomas-ridden Prolinx but Coleman's tenacity was rewarded and he eventually won going away by a length and a quarter.
Keith Reveley's Categorical showed there was life in the old boy yet as the 10-year-old returned to winning ways in the 32Red Handicap Chase at Southwell.
He won his first race, a five-furlong maiden on Southwell's all-weather surface, way back in July 2005 and it says plenty about him that his latest success was over three miles and fences in heavy ground.
While not quite the force of old, he is still up to winning races on the level and his last race in that sphere saw him bolt up by 12 lengths at Redcar in November, taking him up to a handicap mark he last achieved as a three-year-old.
Despite plenty seeming to be in his favour bookmakers could not give him away as he drifted from 8-1 out to 14-1 as the outsider of the six-runner race.
But James Reveley always looked confident as he picked his rivals off one by one before coming clear in the straight to beat the well-backed Hodgson by 24 lengths.
"He's a smashing old horse, we've had him since he was three," said Reveley.
"He's won on the Flat, over hurdles and over fences.
"It's just nice to see him win again really, things just haven't gone right for him lately but everything was in his favour today.
"It was a small field, bad ground and James gave him a nice quiet ride out the back off the pace and he did it well.
"He is what he is, these old Flat horses can be a bit quirky.
"We'll keep mixing it up and he'll probably run on the Flat again, if we'd kept him going on the flat his mark would soon have caught his chase mark up the way he won the last day."