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One-two for Northern Ireland-trained horses as Tammy’s Hill tastes victory

Jockey Mr J Smyth celebrates with connections after winning on Tammys Hill at Cheltenham

Jockey Mr J Smyth celebrates with connections after winning on Tammys Hill at Cheltenham

Northern Ireland-trained horses finished first and second in the Foxhunter Challenge Chase on the final day of the Cheltenham Festival.

Tammy’s Hill (15-2), trained in Newry by Liam Lennon, and ridden by Newry jockey James Smyth, came home first of the 24 runners. The horse is owned by Jason’s father Patrick.

Carsonstown Boy (40-1), trained by Crossgar man Colin McBratney and ridden by Mr Noel McParlan, was second.

Tammys Hill got on top close home to claim the prize. Held up for most of the race, the nine-year-old crept into contention under Smyth from four out as Carsonstown Boy made the pace from the outset.

The long-time leader would not give in without a battle and he kept on for second place, three and a quarter lengths behind the winner.

The well-fancied On The Fringe came with a threatening run but could not maintain his bid and finished third, a length and three-quarters away.

Smyth said: “Fantastic, he jumped brilliant. We’ve fancied him for three years!”

Lennon said: “It’s unbelievable. Totally unreal. It’s a great achievement for the Smyths. They bred this horse themselves and it’s some achievement for James. He’s 35 now and in his twilight years.

“I actually won a race on this horse’s mother - so she must have been a good mare! I finished fourth in this race on a good horse called Joe Blake. I was coming towards the end of my career and probably should have won.

“I think this horse deserves a shot at a good pot now - maybe something like the Irish Grand National.”

 

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