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Emotion All Around As Honeysuckle Has 'Fairytale' Cheltenham Swansong

Emotion All Around As Honeysuckle Has 'Fairytale' Cheltenham Swansong
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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In her final race, Honeysuckle bowed out in style by winning the Mares' Hurdle on the opening day of the Cheltenham festival.

As they turned for home, Love Envoi held the lead from Honeysuckle, the 9/4 joint-favourite, and continued to do so as they went over the final hurdle. With half a furlong to go, Honeysuckle overcame Henry Fry's runner. It was a second victory in the race - three years after her first - for the two-time Champion Hurdle winner.

'Fairytale ending' for Honeysuckle at Cheltenham

"It's the fairytale ending," trainer Henry de Bromhead told ITV.

"It's what you dream of happening. More often than not, it doesn't, but today it has. It means a lot to all of us."


Immediately after the race, and just before Honeysuckle received a rapturous ovation on her way to the winner's enclosure, jockey Rachael Blackmore remembered Henry de Bromhead's son Jack who tragically died last year in a pony racing accident.

"We all wish a very special kid could be here today, but he's watching down on us," said Blackmore.

"The way Henry has produced [Honeysuckle] every day is phenomenal. She's a phenomenal mare, she's been phenomenal for my career. She's just a credit to everyone. Kenny's one of the coolest owners you'll ever ride for."


Honeysuckle owner Kennry Alexander added that he wanted to win the race for the De Bromhead family.

"We did it, we did it," said Alexander.

"I'm so happy for [Henry], for the family, for the stable. This guy is an amazing trainer, but he's also a top, top bloke, and that's the main thing."


Henry De Bromhead told Racing TV it has been a "really tough" since his son's death in September.

"To finish with her like that is incredible," he said.

"Wherever we go, the support is just unbelievable. It's amazing how supportive how people are. We have brilliant friends and family, but the whole industry - it's just incredible.


"We're lucky. There are a lot of people in our situation that don't have the support we get. We're lucky in that sense."

See Also: Michael O'Leary Wishes Davy Russell Had 'Stayed Retired'


michael o'leary davy russell retired

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