Silviniaco Conti takes the Betfred Bowl
Silviniaco Conti made amends for his Gold Cup disappointment, taking the Grade 1 Betfred Bowl with a gutsy front running performance under regular jockey Noel Fehily.
Paul Nicholls’ 8yo somehow managed to finish out of the first three in the Cheltenham showpiece, wandering badly on the run in before finishing a disappointing 4th. The worry afterwards was that this season’s King George winner didn’t see out the distance in the Gold Cup, but Aintree’s flat track seemed to make the difference here, as Fehily made the bold decision of making the running, with last year’s winner First Lieutenant in close contention.
A mistake down the back straight didn’t take much out of the eventual winner but connections must have been sweating again as their charge began to wander again after the last and although he finished a very tired horse, he just found enough to see off the equally tiring 13/8 favourite Dynaste by 1 1/2 lengths.
Irish raider Argocat, a 25/1 outsider trained by Tom Taaffe, was the recipient of another gritty ride from A.P McCoy to finish 3rd, with last season’s winner First Lieutenant back in fourth.
“It is great he won today, because I was never as disappointed as to get beat in the Gold Cup, as I thought he was the best horse in the race”, winning jockey Fehily said afterwards.
“I think he likes a bit of company in front, that’s why he wandered a bit like he did at Cheltenham. He is a very good horse and he deserved to win today.”
“Losing Kauto Star and Denman through old age, we needed a good chaser and he has been brilliant”, Paul Nicholls added. “He has won a King George, a Betfair Chase and now this.
“He ran well in the Gold Cup and didn’t win it, so we have to try and put that right next year and win some races along the way.”
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