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  • Writer's pictureHenry de Bromhead Racing

Inthepocket picks up Top triumph for De Bromhead and Blackmore

Updated: Apr 17

Rachael Blackmore steered Inthepocket to a first Grade One success in the Poundland Top Novices’ Hurdle at Aintree.

A Grade Two winner at Navan earlier in the season for Henry de Bromhead, the JP McManus-owned six-year-old went on to fill the runner-up at the highest level at the Dublin Racing Festival before finishing a creditable fourth to Marine Nationale in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham last month.

On the strength of that form Inthepocket was the 3-1 favourite for his third top-level assignment and after racing close to the pace throughout, he moved smoothly to the lead halfway up the straight and found plenty for pressure on the run-in to secure the honours by length and three-quarters. Strong Leader came from a mile back to fill the runner-up spot, charging home to beat Luccia to the silver medal, with Hansard not far behind that pair in fourth.

De Bromhead said: “The Supreme form looks very good, I’m delighted with that and I think that is our first Grade One winner for the McManus family so really happy with that.

“He warmed into it, he was a little bit slow over the first couple but he’s a horse we’ve always thought a lot of and it’s nice to see him go and prove it.

“I was a bit worried about coming back after Cheltenham, but it didn’t make a difference. He was really good.

“I imagine he’ll be going in a field now and then we’ll see. He’s obviously got good size and scope so we’ll see, there are no plans at the moment.”

He added: “I’m open minded about next year. There’s been some good novices this season. He won a nice race at Naas then it was a bit of a funny race at the Dublin Racing Festival before he ran a nice race at Cheltenham in the Supreme.

“But he’s growing up with every run. He’s got pace and he says, he’s a really exciting horse.”

Blackmore said:” I was always happy and if anything I got carried into it a bit too soon because it is a long way to the line from the back of the last. Dropping my stick didn’t help either, but we got away with it.”

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