Swynmor still stars despite final flight fall

1/7/13 - Tim Vaughan and Richard Johnson must have been cursing their luck after their Swynmor fell at the final flight of the Grade 1 Coral.co.uk Future Champions Finale Juvenile Hurdle at Chepstow when well clear and having the race at his mercy, but at least they now know they have a genuine class performer who lives to fight another day and bid for even bigger prizes later in the season, writes Elliot Slater.

The 11/4 second-favourite was well fancied among horseracing tips and had done everything right until the last, having been given a patient ride by Johnson at the rear of the field before sluicing through the heavy ground to come there cruising into the lead between the final two flights. The four-year-old began to look around him on the run down to the last but still had plenty of petrol left in the tank, only to dive at the flight and crash to the ground, handing the top level prize on a plate to the fortunate Ruacana, who provided trainer John Ferguson with his first ever success in Grade 1 company.

Swynmor, who had been trained on the Flat by William Haggas, for whom he won a 12-furlong Pontefract maiden in June 2012 before failing by just a short-head to land a valuable Chester handicap off a mark of 84, joined Vaughan in October after being sold to his new owner Carl Hinchy for 70,000 guineas at the Tattersalls Horses in Training Sales, and made a big impression on his first start over timber when hacking up by 11 lengths at Newbury in December.

Despite his Chepstow tumble bookmakers reacted by trimming Swynmor to 16/1 (from 25ís) for the JCB Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival races in March, a race for which the eventual Finale Hurdle winner Ruacana is generally on offer at 25/1.

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