Thomas Campbell simply poetry in motion

The well supported 13/8 favourite Thomas Campbell made it two wins in as many starts at Prestbury Park with a comfortable two and a half-length victory in the Regulatory Finance Solutions Handicap under young conditional James Bowen.

Always travelling well, the Nicky Henderson-trained five-year-old son of Yeats stayed on powerfully after the final flight to fend off the sustained challenge of Sophie Leech's Anteros (8/1) in second, with a further five lengths back to Kim Bailey's Rocky Treasure (13/2) in third.




Anteros flies over the last, but Thomas Campbell has him in his sights, photo Liesl King


Seven Barrows maestro Henderson, registering a 4.25/1 double after the victory of Apple's Shakira in the G2 JCB Triumph Trial Juvenile Hurdle, said: "James gave him a lovely ride. He is a really good lad and it's his last day claiming 7lbs so I wasn't going to waste it.


"I've got a number of good boys at home including Ned Curtis and Hugo Hunt so it's nice as these boys are the future.


"Thomas Campbell was always going well - he is progressing nicely. He has a bit of a temperament but he always tries.


"We have never run him in that sort of ground and whilst he is a reprobate, he has ability and he uses it.


"He jumped very well today, so it suggests that he does handle the ground. We'll keep creeping away with him but he's a very honest fella."


No less pleasing for the 16-year-old Welshman was that the victory came on a horse trained by his boss, champion trainer Nicky Henderson, who he joined in the autumn. Today's win was his 21st victory under Rules - he set a British record of 30 wins by a novice point-to-point rider last season - and while he claimed 7lb today following a 20th victory at Exeter in midweek, he is now down to a 5lb allowance.




A delighted Bowen returns on Thomas Campbell, photo Liesl King


Bowen said: "He travelled brilliantly, he settled, and he jumped really good. All the way round I was on the winner, and hopefully he can go on to prove a very nice horse.


"He wasn't the most straightforward when he was younger, but he's come into himself - he was easy to ride today. He's not keen, he settled and he stayed on in that ground. That's his trip.


"So far things are going well - long may it continue."


3.00pm Regulatory Finance Solutions Handicap Hurdle

1 THOMAS CAMPBELL (Mrs Van Geest & Mrs Kelvin Hughes) Nicky Henderson 5-11-10 James Bowen (7) 13/8 favourite

2 Anteros (Mr K. W. Bell) Sophie Leech 9-10-04 8/1

3 Rocky's Treasure (Mr J. Perriss) Kim Bailey 6-10-10 13/2


Distances: 2 1/2, 5

Tote Win: £2.20 Places: £1.60; £1.90; £1.90 Exacta: £15.10