2:58pm Wednesday 14th March 2012
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Nicky Henderson's Bobs Worth stayed on best up the famous Cheltenham hill to claim the RSA Chase in the hands of Barry Geraghty.
Previously unbeaten chaser Grands Crus was all the rage for the Grade One contest but while he made stealthy progress to challenge for the lead running down the hill, in the end he was unable to go with the front two.
Battling with Bobs Worth (9-2) was First Lieutenant, but the former was beginning to win the argument by the time he approached the final fence. He jumped it well and found plenty for pressure to land the prize, with Call The Police coming home in third and Grands Crus only fourth.
Geraghty said: "He just keeps winning. He's a simple sort really, he jumps and he tries. He won his three hurdles round here and now he's won his chase so he's four from four. He's just so genuine."
Henderson added: "What a tough horse. Barry gave him a wonderful ride but he's got to do that because he sold the thing to me! We have had our problems with the horse through the winter and we never thought he would get here. Everybody has worked incredibly hard and it's been a long battle to get him back.
"I haven't been happy with him at any stage this season. We fiddled with his wind in January and he was the last horse in the yard to get his coat. His jumping hadn't been great either. Barry has had two armchair rides so far this week, but he's had to sing for his supper on that one.
"I'm amazed we've got him here in that sort of form and because it's been a rush, that will probably be it for the season."
Mouse Morris was more than satisfied with First Lieutenant's effort and felt he was just second-best on the day.
He said: "He ran a brilliant race. There was no bad luck, he was just beaten by a better one on the day. He hasn't let me down and I haven't any plans for him."
David Pipe could offer no excuse for the eclipse of Grands Crus. He said: "Scu (Tom Scudamore) said he just didn't finish his race off. He travelled well and jumped well but just didn't get up the hill. Hopefully there will be other days for him."
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