Local trainer Snowden bags the feature race at a Baltic Newbury with Datsalrightgino

By Peter Moore at Newbury 2nd December 2023

The highlight on yet another days excellent racing at a freezing cold Newbury was the Coral Gold Cup.

The race run over 3m 2f saw 20 runners contest the race with prize money worth over £250,000.

The race itself was won by local trainer Jamie Snowden who saddled the 16-1 shot Datsalrightgino with Gavin Sheehan on board.

Towards the rear of the field early on the seven year old gradually started improving and looked a big player four out before keeping on to get the better of Irish raider Mahler Mission.

Snowden, who has been training since 2008 had trained Ga Law to win last seasons Paddy Power Gold Cup and You Wear It Well at the Cheltenham Festival, but this will undoubtedly be the highlight of his training career.

“These big handicaps are very hard to win, but fair play to my team,” he said. “This horse isn’t short of speed and we campaigned him last season over mainly two miles as a novice chaser and he improved 20lb, but Gavin still said he couldn’t wait to go up to three miles and he was right. That was brilliant and it’s weird because if Newcastle had been on today, Gavin would have been there.

“Of course today was competitive. It’s the Coral Gold Cup and a wonderful race, one of the biggest chases of the season. You can’t have high expectations coming into it, but we knew he was in good order and there might be a bit of wiggle room in his mark over that trip if it worked, and, thankfully, it did.

“Gav gave him a lovely, cool ride and he was on a horse going forwards. He was conscious not to get to the front too soon, but he went away at the end.”

Another local trainer was on target early on when Nicky Henderson produced another fine novice hurdler in the making in the shape of Jingko Blue.

The four year old had to fend of the attention of Masaccio, but just got his nose in front to justify the 7-4 joint favourite price he was sent off at.

However the trainers thoughts were with stablemate Jeu Des Champs who suffered a fatal heart attack in the same race.

The point to point runner up collapsed between the first two hurdles on his debut under rules.

Jonjo O’Neill was a happy trainer after winning the Sir Peter O’Sullevan Memorial Chase with Inch House who completed an excellent two days for owner Michael Geoghegan.

Geoghegan was in the winners enclosure just twenty four hours earlier courtesy of Kandoo Kid and looks to have a nice prospect in Inch House who was successful in the second race on the card a 2m 6 and a half furlong Handicap Steeple Chase.

Elsewhere the Nigel Twiston-Davies trained Manimole held off the challenge of the 50-1 shot Brave Jen by a head under Sam Twiston-Davies in the opener.

There was a big shock in the Coral Racing Club Handicap Hurdle when Get A Tonic sprung a surprise at 28-1.

A perfect round of jumping with Harry Skelton on board the seven year old mare was enough to comfortably see off the rest of the field to win by eleven lengths.

The Gary Moore trained top weight Hansard was a three quarters of a length winner in the 2m half a furlong Intermediate Handicap Hurdle under Niall Houlihan

The final race of the day saw another excellent round of jumping from Elixir De Nutz who again produced a super performance to see off the odds on favourite Master Chewy to win by a length and a half with the up and coming Freddie Gingell on board.