Don Cossack emerges victorious in the Cheltenham Gold Cup

Meanwhile, Nina Carberry rides On The Fringe to success in the Foxhunter Chase Challenge Cup

BY Cian Roche 18:21 Friday 18 March 2016, 18:21 18 Mar 2016

An assured performance saw Gold Cup favourite Don Cossack streak to victory on the final day of the 2016 Cheltenham Festival.

Despite a strong field including Djakadam, Cue Card and Don Poli, the Gordon Elliot trained nine-year-old streaked clear over the last to put the gloss on a near-perfect run.

The day began with the Grade One JCB Triumph Hurdle and the field was headed by Aidan O'Brien trained Ivanovich Gorbatov.

The 9-2 priced favourite moved steadily for the opening stages, allowing 150-1 shot Big Mcintosh to make the early running.

Apple's Jade move slowly through the field, making up ground on Clan De Obeaux, Let's Dance and on the outside Who Dares Wins.

Over the last Ivanovich Gorbatov produced some fine running and saw off Apple's Jade as well as Footpad to secure victory.

"It's unbelievable, I don't think it's sunk in yet. This is very hard to put into words. Berry was very confident in him" said Joseph O'Brien, who had overseen the training of Ivanovich Gorbatov.

Ivanovich Gorbatov ridden by Barry Geraghty (right) on the way to winning the JCB Triumph Hurdle. Image: David Davies / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Last year's winner of the Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle produced a superb finish as Wicklow Brave streaked to victory with  Paul Townend.

This year, Townend opted for Ivan Grozny, but it was great field who made the early running.

Sternrubin and Fethard Player also produced strong finishes to place, but it was 8-1 shot Superb Story who moved in from the midfield to get brothers Harry and Dan Skelton off the mark.

Harry Skelton on board Superb Story celebrates victory. Image: David Davies / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Unowhatimeanharry upset 7-2 favourite Shantou Village to capture the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle in the day's third race.

Ruby Walsh, who had been unseated in the previous by Dicosimo, was once again out of the running after Long Dog fell.

Champers On Ice and Barters Hill produced the biggest challenge heading into the final stages, as the former looked to have it in the sewn up.

But a powerful finish over the last from Unowhatimeanharry saw him catch the leaders and win marginally.

Unowhatimeanharry (right) alongside Barters Hill storms to victory. Image: David Davies / PA Wire/Press Association Images

The Gold Cup was dominated in by Don Cossack in the day's feature race.

A poor start from Don Poli saw him lengths back from the midfield as O'Faolains Boy made the early running.

Djakadam moved comfortably alongside Don Cossack and matched him almost stride for stride before heading into the final straight.

Cue Card didn't jump particularly well for the duration and was made to pay as he fell over the third from home.

It was in the final straight where Don Cossack came into his own and pulled away for a resounding victory.

Trainer Gordon Elliot said: "It's brilliant, unbelievable. The whole team at Gigginstown have supported me from the start. You don't often see me crying, I can't believe it. Ive never been so nervous in my life, I'm just so happy for all of us." 

Don Cossack on his way to winning the Gold Cup. David Davies / PA Wire/Press Association Images

In the remainder of the day's races, Nina Carberry atoned for her loss aboard Josies' Orders to capture the Foxhunter Chase with On The Fringe. There was victory for Ibis Du Rheu in the Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle and Solar Impulse surged to victory in the Grand Annual Chase.



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