Killala Quay bounces back to land Grade 2
Report: Sandown, Friday
Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (registered as the Winter Novices' Hurdle) (Grade 2) 2m4f, 4yo+
THE promising Killala Quay, well beaten in a hot handicap at Cheltenham's Open meeting last month, got back to winning ways at Sandown on Friday when he landed the Grade 2 novice hurdle from Beat That.
Sent off a 5-1 chance, the winner had recorded two easy wins in novice hurdles and had the option of sticking to those races at Cheltenham last month.
However, trainer Charlie Longsdon thought he was on a decent mark so pitched him into handicap company in an intermediate hurdle.
He finised seventh - beaten 14 lengths - behind Thomas Crapper, but returned to form in fine style under Richard Johnson in the race registered as the Winter Novices' Hurdle.
Settled wide in fourth as Saint Roque took the five-runner field along, Killala Quay needed a few reminders from Johnson turning in, but was still in contention in the home straight, as was the Nicky Henderson-trained Beat That.
He went very smoothly under Barry Geraghty and led after jumping the second-last, but a blunder at the final hurdle helped Killala Quay record a two-and-a-half-length victory.
The front-running 5-4 favourite Saint Roque finished third.