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CHELTENHAM THURSDAY: Ted Walsh strikes with Any Second Now
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CHELTENHAM THURSDAY: Ted Walsh strikes with Any Second Now
on 14 March 2019
Derek O'Connor was on board the consistent Kim Muir winner, another for J.P. McManus

TED Walsh combined with top amateur rider Derek O'Connor to win Thursday's closing race, the Kim Muir Handicap Chase, with Any Second Now.

The 6/1 winner was landing his first chase success on his 10th start over fences but he deserved a big race win after some good efforts in hot company.

Always travelling well, O'Connor's mount came through to challenge the well-backed Kilfilum Cross (7/1) at the final fence and he bounded clear to win by almost four lengths. The Young Master was a similar distance away in third.

Walsh has always had a special affinity with the Kim Muir after winning it as a jockey on Castleruddery in 1974 and Prolan in 1976. This was the trainer's second Cheltenham win as a trainer, coming 22 years Commanche Court in the Triumph Hurdle.

The trainer said: "You need all the help you can get here and Derek was marvellous on him all the way. It's over 20 years since I won here with Commanche Court and over 40 since I rode Castleruddery and Prolan, and I love everything about it here.

"I only rode four winners here and I thought it was great, but Ruby can ride four winners in a day. That's how different it is. But every year it seems to get better here. Some places lose their charm, but everything they have done here has improved it.

"It's magnificent. It's magic. I've been racing all over the world, but there's nowhere like Cheltenham. This is on a planet of its own."

It was a third win of the day for owner J.P. McManus, following the victories of Defi Du Seuil and Sire Du Berlais earlier in the day.

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