HORSE RACING: ‘Vinndication’ at Huntingdon Racecourse as favourite samples success in Sidney Banks Memorial Novices’ Hurdle

PUBLISHED: 10:04 13 February 2018 | UPDATED: 10:04 13 February 2018

Vinndication and jockey David Bass on their way to victory in the Sidney Banks Memorial Novices' Hurdle at Huntingdon. Picture: STEVE DAVIES

Vinndication and jockey David Bass on their way to victory in the Sidney Banks Memorial Novices' Hurdle at Huntingdon. Picture: STEVE DAVIES

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There was ‘Vinndication’ for favourite-backers in the big race at Huntingdon last Thursday.

Trainer Kim Bailey’s smart prospect powered to victory under jockey David Bass in the Sidney Banks Memorial Novices’ Hurdle at odds of 5/2.

Unbeaten five year-old Vinndication stayed on strongly to beat Western Ryder (whose trainer Warren Greatrex was chasing a hat-trick after sending out the winner in the previous two years) by almost four lengths in the Listed contest over two miles, three-and-a-half furlongs.

It’s 20 years since the winner of this race went on to sample success at the Cheltenham Festival the following month. That record doesn’t look like ending with Bailey favouring a tilt at one of the big prizes at Aintree during the Grand National fixture instead for Vinndication.

Only two other favourites – 9/4 shot Marmont in the opening two-mile novices’ handicap hurdle and Amberjam (100/30) in the three mile, one furlong handicap hurdle – obliged in a seven-race card. Champion jockey Richard Johnson and Maxime Tissier were respective winning jockeys.

A strong Class 2 handicap hurdle over two miles, three-and-a-half furlongs was won by Azzerti. Jockey Adrian Heskin did the steering on the 7/2 shot for in-form trainer Alan King.

Lee Edwards guided Midnight Target (3/1) to success in the near three-mile novices’ handicap chase for trainer John Groucott while 13/2 chance Ratify (Robert Dunne riding for Fergal O’Brien) landed a two mile, four fulongs handicap chase.

The closing bumper went to Sparkling Dawn at 5/1 with Tom Cannon aboard the Johnny Farrelly-trained winner.

The next fixture at Huntingdon is on Thursday, February 22 when racing is followed by a Cheltenham Festival preview event in the evening.

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