Tipperary: Grozny strolls to Grimes Hurdle success

Ivan Grozny

Ivan Grozny: was cut for the Ebor after his win at Tipperary

  PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos  

 By Alex Wiltshire 5:31PM 9 JUL 2016 

Report: Tipperary, Saturday

Kevin McManus Bookmaker Grimes Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m, 4yo+

IVAN GROZNY dominated the Grade 3 Grimes Hurdle from start to finish to win at a canter for trainer Willie Mullins and demonstrate his credentials for another tilt at a valuable Flat handicap.

The Andrea and Graham Wylie-owned six-year-old was last seen finishing ninth in the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot, but returned over obstacles here to win without being troubled. He holds an entry for the Betfred Ebor stakes run over at York, for which he was cut to a 16-1 chance (from 25-1).

In a change of tactics, the well-backed 9-10 favourite was allowed to go over ten lengths clear, with veteran Thousand Stars and the Joseph O’Brien-trained Plinth leading the chasing group.

With a half-mile remaining Sempre Medici in the colours of Rich and Susannah Ricci, also following up from a below-par Royal Ascot run, moved into second but could not get anywhere near the runaway leader. Tocororo, racing for Gigginstown House Stud, came from the rear of the chasing group to finish third.

Bigger targets

Winning rider Ruby Walsh was satisfied with the change of approach for Ivan Grozny, and hinted that a return to the Flat could be on the agenda.

“I hoped I’d be far enough in front so they wouldn’t be able to catch me,” he said. “Maybe there is a good race on the Flat for him.”

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