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Nicky Henderson praises JP McManus as Chantry House provides legendary owner with 4,000th winner

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Seven Barrows trainer Nicky Henderson provided legendary race horse owner JP McManus with an incredible landmark at Cheltenham Racecourse on Saturday.

Chantry House clinched victory in the Cotswold Chase and, as a result, handed McManus his 4,000th winner as an owner.

Nico de Boinville, one week on from his memorable victory on Shishkin at Ascot, was once again in the winning enclosure as the famous green and gold hoop colours passed the post in a big race again.

Nicky Henderson provided JP McManus with his 4,000th winner
Nicky Henderson provided JP McManus with his 4,000th winner

After the race, de Boinville said: “I thought he was feeling a bit tired after the last because he really laid it all out there.

“I thought the ground was testing enough and they’ve gone a really good gallop, so he has done it well in the end.”

On McManus’s success, the jockey added: “It’s a phenomenal number and it is right up there with AP’s [McCoy] achievements and I am just lucky that I am able to wear the colours.”

Chantry House is expected to mount a challenge in the Boodles Gold Cup at the home of jump racing next month, but he was made to work for the victory on Saturday.

Former stablemate Santini, now trained by Polly Grundy, ran superbly to finish second, while Aye Right was behind in third.

For McManus, it’s a fantastic achievement and Henderson has played a significant role in this with the likes of Buveur D’Air and Epatante just two of the stars he has trained.

Speaking about the landmark, Henderson said: “I think it's wonderful and nothing gives me more pleasure than doing that and it's lovely that it's at Cheltenham.

“Well done JP. He has been an amazing friend, and supporter, and nothing gives me more pleasure, I can assure you.”

The Seven Barrows handler was unable to score more success for the owner shortly after as Champ came second to a rejuvenated Paisley Park, who won the Grade 2 Cleeve Hurdle.

In another thrilling race, the pair could well be on for a rematch in the Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle on the penultimate day of the Cheltenham Festival.

Champ at Newbury Pic: Francesca Altoft Photography
Champ at Newbury Pic: Francesca Altoft Photography

It was one of the performances of the season so far as Aidan Coleman managed to reduce a deficit of as much as 15 lengths to his rivals to score victory on Paisley Park.

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