Geraghty on the double at Cheltenham

Story by Fergal Lynch

Thursday, 14th March, 2019 5:38pm

Geraghty on the double at Cheltenham

Defi Du Seuil claimed the JLT Novices' Chase

After two barren days Drumree jockey Barry Geraghty landed his first winner of the 2019 Cheltenham Festival, and his 37th in total, when he steered the Philip Hobbs trained Defi Du Seuil to victory in the first race today, the JLT Novices Chase.
Geraghty produced a superb ride on the six year old as he travelled smoothly throughout and won by two and a quarter lengths from old rival Lostintranslation who was ridden by Moynalvey's Robbie Power.
Delaying his challenge in the race made a big difference to a horse who was caught on the run-in by Lostintranslation in the Dipper Novices' Chase at Cheltenham in January, but he has beaten that rival in both clashes since. 
"They're two really good horses. Lostintranslation did me here a few months ago, we got it back at Sandown and the form has stood again. They are just two really good horses," said Geraghty.
"I was banking on a big one at the last and he came up for me."
After waiting 15 races for his winner Geraghty quicky scored two-in-a-row when he rode the Gordon Elliott trained Sire Du Berlais to victory in the Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle. 
Geraghty defied trouble in running to give Elliott back-to-back wins in the Pertemps. 
The seven-year-old beat 40-1 shot Tobefair by three lengths.
"I thought we were beaten coming to the last because he got stopped at the top of the hill a few times, but Barry gave him a great ride. The plan was not to get there too soon and Barry delivered," said Elliott.
"This has been the plan for a while and I'm glad it worked out. We had a slow start but we've got three winners on the board now."
Sire Du Berlais was given an expert ride by Geraghty.
"I thought I was in trouble as I was tight for room, but he kept rallying. It was a good battle and a lovely race to win," said the Drumree man.
Four of the first five were Irish-trained, with Tobefair chased home by Not Many Left, Cuneo and A Toi Phil, who is also trained by Elliott.

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