'He looked like he was laughing at them,' said Mick Fitzgerald of Thistlecrack on St. Stephen's Day.
In just his fourth race over fences, Colin Tizzard's horse easily won the King George at Kempton and confirmed himself as the most exciting competitor in national hunt racing.
The eight-year-old's enthusiasm over the 18 jumps was abundantly clear - especially at the second fence and again when he faced it on his second circuit. The distance behind the fence from which he jumped wowed many viewers, including commentators.
As he won his ninth consecutive race, his trainer described his jumping as 'immaculate'. More than that, some of it was simply astonishing.
Thistlecrack has already been installed as favourite for the Gold Cup.
These were the final moments of the race as the 11/10 favourite galloped to victory.
— Racing UK (@Racing_UK) December 26, 2016