Cheltenham Festival 2017: Tully East claims victory following Foxtail Hill fall in the Novice’s Handicap Chase

Charles Reynolds
Cheltenham festival 2017 drew to a close with the Novice's Handicap Chase

After a delayed start, Tully East stormed to victory in the Novice’s Handicap Chase, ridden by Denis O’Reagan in the final race of the first day of the Cheltenham Festival.

The pre-race favourite had been Foxtail Hill, trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies, and the horse had led the race from the beginning, going out a little too fast. However, that was not the mistake that ultimately cost the favourite, with Foxtail Hill falling when leading, the fancied Burtons Well also crashing out of the race.

The mistake allowed Mixboy to take a lead at the front of the race, and with three fences left to jump it seemed as if about half of the field could win the race, Killiney Court and Double W’s just trailing behind the leader.

However, with Killiney Court falling at the last, Tully East saw his chance and jumped into the lead on the final fence, before racing away to take the victory. Gold Present and Two Taffs finished in second and third respectively, but neither looked likely to win at any stage, with Tully East the clear winner.

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