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  • 14:45 bet365 Hurdle 3m 26y

  • (Registered As The West Yorkshire Hurdle) (Grade 2) £40,000 added 4yo+ 6 ran
  • Winner £22,780 2nd £8,548 3rd £4,280 4th £2,132
  • Going: Good
  • Surface: Turf
  • Winning time: 5m 52.40s
  • Off time: 14:45:16

Ballyoptic down as Silsol scores in bet365 Hurdle

Last Updated: 29/10/16 6:45pm

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Silsol leads the field after two out in the Bet365 West Yorkshire Hurdle with Ballyoptic (left) staying on.

Silsol leads the field after two out in the Bet365 West Yorkshire Hurdle with Ballyoptic (left) staying on.

Silsol made a winning start to the new campaign when taking the bet365 Hurdle at Wetherby as Ballyoptic came down at the last.

The Romford Pele was kicked into the lead three out by Jonathan Moore and the Grade Two contest suddenly turned into something of a sprint, with favourite Ballyoptic caught out of position and outpaced.

Native River and Silsol found top gear at that point, and by the time the field headed to the final flight, The Romford Pele had been put in his place, but Ballyoptic was still responding to Ryan Hatch's urgings and inching closer when getting the final flight wrong and crashing out.

That left conditional Jack Sherwood to continue his fine association with Silsol (13/2) by driving him clear to score by two and three-quarter lengths, with Lil Rockerfeller failing to reel in Native River for second place by half a length.

Happily, there was a positive postscript to the race when Ballyoptic was able to get to his feet a few minutes after the fall and walk back to the racecourse stables.

Succesful trainer Paul Nicholls, watching from Ascot, told Channel 4 Racing: "He came in late because he'd run in Auteuil

"It's great to give Jack some nice rides because he's a good lad, who works hard and he's had some tough times. He's a good member of the team.

"Now we won't even consider going back over fences - we'll just stay in those sort of long-distance hurdles."

Sherwood added: "He's won a Welsh Champion Hurdle with me too and is my favourite horse. I've been with Paul three years and he was the first horse I ever rode there.

"I've had a Cheltenham winner (Ibis Du Rheu) but this is my first Grade Two.

"Everyone thinks he needs heavy ground but he's gone on good ground before, he's just versatile."

In victory, Silsol earned a 25/1 quote from Sky Bet for the World Hurdle next March, with Ballyoptic eased out fractionally from 14/1 to 16/1.

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