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Monk in the winning habit at Doncaster
12:18pm Thursday 21st February 2013 in Sport
PERMIT holder JessicaWest- face Durham music wood is dreaming of Cheltenham after Monkerty Tunkerty, her only horse in training, won the 32Red Casino Veterans’ Handicap Chase at Doncaster.
Westwood set out from her base at Minehead in Somerset at 6.30am but it proved to be a worthwhile five-hour journey because she now has a contender for the JLT Specialty Handicap Chase.
The 11-4 favourite shrugged aside a decent field of seasoned campaigners in just his fourth handicap to show he would not be out of place at next month’s Festival.
The former hunter chase and point-to-pointer put his head in front three out and stuck to his task well to beat Marufo by two and threequarter lengths, with West End Rocker another threequarters of a length away in third.
‘‘He’s my first runner here and he’s my only horse in training.
“I have a bumper horse who might run later in the spring,’’ said Westwood.
‘‘I’ve always liked coming here because I had success leading horses up when I worked for trainers like Jeremy Scott and Philip Hobbs.
‘‘He’s still learning and made a few mistakes because they went at such a gallop and he’s not used to that.
‘‘It took five hours to get here, but was definitely worth it.
‘‘He’s in the JLT Specialty and the Byrne Plate, but I think the former race over three miles will be the one.’’ Somemothersdohaem (6-1) booked his place in the JCB Triumph Hurdle when springing a minor upset at in the 32Red.com Juvenile Hurdle.
The John Ryan-trained gelding showed plenty of zip to score by two and a half lengths from King Of Dudes, with 1-2 shot Swnymor third.
Ryan only decided to try Somemothersdohavem over hurdles after he proved troublesome in the stalls on the Flat.
‘‘He refused to go in the stalls and he is a bit temperamental.
“The good thing about hurdling is that there is no containment down at the start,’’ said the Newmarket handler.
‘‘He’s got issues but as long as you can deal with them and work with him, he’s got ability.”
Trainer Nicky Henderson and jockey Barry Geraghty enjoyed a double with Otto The Great and Minella For Fitness.
Otto The Great (5-2) put in an assured display on his debut over fences to defeat stablemate Private Equity by three and a quarter lengths.
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