Helnwein and Edwardstone both so brave at Sandown on the final day

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What a wonderful last day of the jumps season racing served up at Sandown today, and in all honesty everyone at Barbury were absolutely delighted with the conclusion.

Stable jockey Tom Cannon clocked up his 50th winner of the winter on Helnwein in the final of the novice hurdle championship, while stable-star Edwardstone ran right up to his best in the Grade 1 Celebration Chase, being only pipped for second place in the last stride by El Fabiolo, the pair filling the places behind the impressive Jonbon.

Cannon said:”It’s been a great day. Helnwein settled well and has run well on this course in the past, and he really picked up for me when I asked him at the final fence, and though there were no excuses for Edwardstone, he has run another terrific race and has produced a similar level of form against Jonbon as he has in some of their previous battles around here.”

Helnwein reversed recent Taunton form with Secret Squirrel, who started favourite, but on 5lb better terms and on a track where he has excelled in the past, Alan was hopeful that revenge might be more than a possibility. He could be an exciting novice chaser if Alan and the Noel Fehily syndicate choose to go over fences next season.

It’s back to the Flat for Alan tomorrow. Alan said:”We have two runners at Southwell and one at Bath. Royal Deeside has rattled up four places in a row over hurdles, so we are going back to the level at Southwell before he has a proper break, He is a big, tall horse who will improve for a good summer on his back and he ought to be well handicapped when he comes back next season.

Tritonic is also off to Southwell and he had a good blow after finishing fifth in the Queen’s Prize at Kempton, his first race for almost four months,. He should be sharper here and might have another run before his main early season target of the Ascot Stakes, in which he finished third last year.

Whispering Royal heads to Bath. He shaped like the second best horse for most of the way at Fakenham last month but didn’t quite get home. He had been sick after his previous run at Huntingdon and had missed a fair bit of work before Fakenham, so I’d like to think he can build on that effort.”