Rebecca Curtis and Warren Greatrex Image reproduced with the kind permission of Newbury Racecourse

Rebecca Curtis trains Potters Cross
Image reproduced with the kind permission of Newbury Racecourse

Potters Cross shrugged aside a big weight to give 7 pound claimer James King a big victory in the Betfred Mandarin Handicap Chase at Newbury.

Potters Cross just about led over the first fence from Royal Palladium, with Arbeo and Horatio Hornblower both prominent.

Racing away towards the Cross Fence for the first time, Potters Cross, Arbeo and Royal Palladium disputed the lead with Bob Tucker and Horatio Hornblower right on their heels.

As the field raced down the straight for the first time, Potters Cross and Royal Palladium were joined to the outside by Financial Climate.

Racing to the water, it was Financial Climate who touched down just ahead of Potters Cross, as Royal Palladium dropped back a little, with Horatio Hornblower and Treaty Girl next, as they headed out with a circuit to run.

Financial Climate jumped beautifully down the back straight and continued to bowl along in front, moving three lengths ahead of Potters Cross, with Treaty Girl and Horatio Hornblower next and a gap then to Conas Taoi and the closing Yanmare.

Turning for home Potters Cross went on again from Financial Climate, with Treaty Girl and Yanmare next and then Conas Taoi, in an open looking race.

Potters Cross jumped three from home and was still clear at the next under James King. However, heading to the last, Potters Cross was chased hard by Conas Taoi and Treaty Girl, but the top weight fought on gamely to hold off Treaty Girl, with Conas Taoi third and a big gap back to Yanmare.

Potters Cross had put up a fine performance on his previous start when second to Lamb Or Cod.

Winning trainer Rebecca Curtis said afterwards: “Lovely horse, stays really well, jumps well. I was worried today with 12 stone 2 on his back I’ve used James King and I thought he gave him a really good ride.

“I did think he might get collared on the line but I did know that he does stay really well. I think he ran equally as good a race at Chepstow (last time). Lamb Or Cod is a very good horse.”