Sizing Europe tested by Light challenge
Leopardstown Festival: Sizing Europe registered his third victory of the campaign with a determined performance in the Paddy Power Dial-A-Bet Chase at Leopardstown.
Henry de Bromhead’s stable star was a 1-3 favourite to add to his Grade One tally and was disputing the lead with Rubi Light throughout the two-mile-one-furlong test.
Despite travelling noticeably better than his closest rival heading down the back straight, some fine leaps from Rubi Light kept him in contention. Sizing Europe and Andrew Lynch looked set to ease clear from the home turn, but it was hard work in the testing conditions and Rubi Light galloped on tenaciously to make the market leader pull out all the stops.
British raider Edgardo Sol was third.
“That was great, we’re very lucky to have him, he makes training a lot easier," De Bromhead said. "You wouldn’t really want him to be taking a hold like he did there over two miles (but) he loves this game, he just loves it. I’m very relieved as when you are 1-3 (favourite), second is disappointing.
“It’s great to win that race now and we’ll work on from there to Cheltenham. I don’t know what we are going to do yet. He could possibly be entered in the three big chases (Gold Cup, Queen Mother Champion Chase and Ryanair) at Cheltenham.
“For me he’s looking far more like a stayer this year so we’ll see, it’s all a long way away yet. We’ll try to get him there first.”
Lynch added: “Sizing Europe has been a very good horse to me. He was very fresh in the race early on and was running a bit keen. Rubi Light was jumping great alongside us and both of them are in fact very good horses to jump. He started to idle a bit out in front on his own but at least he won. He felt the ground very dead, he’s way better on good ground but he got away with it today. He stays well, he did it well.”
Jezki maintained his unbeaten record over hurdles with a hugely impressive performance in the Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle.
Jessica Harrington’s four-year-old was sent off the 11-8 favourite on the strength of his win in the Royal Bond Novice Hurdle at Fairyhouse and was always travelling powerfully in the hands of Robbie Power.
He cruised to the lead halfway up the home straight, safely negotiated the final flight and then powered clear on the run-in to beat main market rival Waaheb by six lengths.
Supporters of odds-on favourite Mumbo Jumbo were made to sweat before he eventually got on top close home to win the Paddy Power Maiden Hurdle.
The Margaret Mullins-trained dual bumper winner was a 4-6 favourite having been narrowly beaten on his hurdling bow at Listowel in September and was sent straight into the lead by the trainer’s son, Danny Mullins.