Topham Chase Result: Filleule flies to victory

Barry Geraghty: Successful aboard Ma Filleule.

The formidable Henderson-Geraghty combination completed a double on the day as Ma Filleule turned in a spring-heeled display over the Grand National fences to claim the Topham Chase...

Having chased home Holywell, winner of the Mildmay Novices' Chase earlier on the card, at the Cheltenham Festival, Ma Filleule brought strong form to the race and was a 9-1 shot for a wide-open handicap.

Henderson's charge travelled powerfully and jumped impeccably for much of the race, carting Geraghty into a share of the lead after jumping the Canal Turn.

She was upsides favourite Double Ross jumping the second last, but quickly left him and the rest of her rivals trailing in her wake and victory was virtually assured as she flew the last.

She galloped all the way up the long-run and was eased down in the closing stages, but still came home with eight lengths in hand over Bennys Mist.

Eastlake and Tatenen finished third and fourth respectively, with Double Ross fifth.

Henderson said: "She enjoyed that. I hoped she would. She seemed very good at home. She was a bit careful the first time and she had another practice on Tuesday just to make sure.

"It looked good, but I was trying to watch three of them.

"I was a bit worried she might get outpaced early on, but she managed to hold her place.

"She got into a great rhythm and it looked she had a nice time."

Henderson went on to suggest Ma Filleule might emulate last year's winner Triolo D'Alene and return for the National next year.

"The idea in the Topham is to see if you can look at the National the next year," he said.

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