A very special day for us all on Friday, as Master Dancer sprinted up the famous hill to provide us with a long overdue first winner at Cheltenham!!
Held up in last, Master Dancer settled beautifully, jumped well and still looked to be travelling very strongly heading to the second-last, but had 10 lengths to make up on the leaders. However, he made relentless progress from the home bend, getting to within two lengths at the last before sprinting up the hill, drawing right away to win by 10 lengths! It was a masterful waiting ride from Dickie Johnson and so special that he was on board, having been a huge part of our success since I started training.
It is a win for the whole team. I am delighted for the 40-strong group of Select Racing Club members that were there to welcome Master Dancer back into the winners’ enclosure and for the horse’s owner Colin Davies, but also hugely appreciate the very large numbers of messages of congratulations that I’ve received over the past couple of days from so many of you. It feels like a winner for all our owners and staff and, now that the monkey is off our back, hopefully it is the first of many!
All the staff deserve a special mention. We have an excellent team that work incredibly hard and there were plenty of celebrations (and a few sore heads!) on Friday night/Saturday morning!