Jonbon's hot streak continues with Sky Bet Supreme Trial Rossington Main Novices' Hurdle success
Jonbon maintained his unbeaten record with a workmanlike victory in the Sky Bet Supreme Trial Rossington Main Novices’ Hurdle at Haydock.
A £570,000 purchase by owner JP McManus after winning an Irish point-to-point, the full-brother to the mighty Douvan had since won a bumper and a maiden hurdle at Newbury and a Grade Two event at Ascot.
Nicky Henderson’s charge was the 2-5 favourite to double his Grade Two tally on Merseyside – and while it was not entirely straightforward, he ultimately got the job done in good style.
After travelling freely behind the pacesetting pair of Richmond Lake and Donny Boy for much of the two-mile contest, Aidan Coleman asked Jonbon to move closer at the third flight from the finish, when he ran into the back of Donny Boy and had to switch inside.
Richmond Lake was still in with every chance at the final obstacle, as was Might I, who was last seen chasing home Jonbon’s stablemate Constitution Hill at Sandown.
Just for a moment it looked like Richmond Lake might make a real race of it, but Jonbon found another gear after Coleman drew the whip and was three lengths clear at the line.
Coleman said: “It was hard work in that ground, it’s a sharp two miles around here, a bit of a speed track.
“We were all going flat out turning in but he’s picked up well and then, like every horse that hits the front here, he pulled up inside the last half-furlong. But I was very happy with the performance.
“He’s a pleasure to ride, the only moment of alarm was three out when Conor (O’Farrell on Donny Boy) jumped right and I winged it and landed on top of him. It wasn’t ideal, but everything went well other than that
“He’s so straightforward, people need to stop talking about him being precocious because he’s not, he’s a lovely ride. He’s beat a good field and I was very happy with him.
“In his last two races he tipped away in front and had it easy, today we went an end-to-end gallop, it was a very good race.
“I felt I was always going to go away after the last, he did but then pulled up a bit. But how many times do you see that here? He just got lonely. You won’t see many horses win on the bridle on that ground.
“He has another win under his belt and that rode a very good race.”
Sky Bet left Jonbon unchanged at 3-1 for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, while Coral left him alone at 7-2 behind 2-1 favourite and stablemate Constitution Hill.
Speaking from Ascot, Henderson told ITV Racing: “I thought that was good. It was a different test today, a speed track, very soft ground.
“They quickened once in the straight and you thought he’s got something to do here, but he got there nicely. Then he quickened again and I like horses that can quicken twice. He’s gone right away at the end. I’d say job done.”