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RACING: Charlie's backing Long Lunch
Chipping Norton trainer Charlie Longsdon believes Long Lunch is a horse to follow after the gelding made a winning debut in a maiden hurdle at Plumpton on Monday.
The four-year-old followed up his National Hunt Flat Race win at Market Rasen last month by taking charge at the last flight of the two-mile contest under Noel Fehily to beat Auld Stock by two and three-quarter lengths.
Longsdon said: “There were a couple of decent sorts in the race and winning the way he did, shows that he has a very bright future.
“However, he is still tall and weak, so we will not rush him this season and you will probably not now see him until Christmas time.” Long Lunch provided Long-sdon’s 17th winner of the month, which had continued last week with Grandads Horse recording his eighth win for the yard with a game victory at Wetherby.
Fehily got a fine leap out of the strapping seven-year-old at the last fence to land the feature Bobby Renton Han-dicap Chase over an extended two and a half miles by a length and a quarter from Tara Rose last Thursday.
Longsdon added: “That is his eighth win for us – what a star especially as he had one year off with a fractured bone in his knee.”
It gave the trainer a welcome tonic after his Hunting-don double last Tuesday was marred by the tragic loss of stable stalwart Strongbows Legend.
The master of Hull Farm Stables continued his rich vein of form by saddling Dom Lukka (5-2) and Wadswick Court (3-1) to post victories.
But in between Strongbows Legend – owned and bred by his landlords, Chris and Fran Marriott – was put down after breaking a shoulder in a heavy fall at the second-last fence when still in with every chance in the three-mile han-dicap chase won by Muldoon’s Picnic.
Longsdon said: “It is part of the risk of our great sport, but it is always a big loss when something like this happens.”
The double saw Fehily power Dom Lukka home in a handicap hurdle over three miles and two furlongs, before Charlie Deutsch struck on the well-regarded Wadswick Cou-rt in a National Hunt Flat Race.