Black H'penny provides change of fortune for Old

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Richard Price and the luckless Jim Old saddled their first winners of the season at Sandown yesterday. Price also confirmed that Flakey Dove, the Champion Hurdler, is to be retired.

Black H'penny was the horse that ended Old's losing sequence, which reached its nadir when the stable's Mole Board threw away the Agfa Hurdle by unshipping his rider at the last on this course 12 days ago. "I didn't think I would ever have a winner again," Old said.

After Zealous Kitten's tenacious win for Price, the Leominster trainer admitted that the decision to retire Flakey Dove to the breeding shed has lifted a huge weight off his shoulders.

"She is in one piece and she's the only other mare, after Dawn Run, to have won the Champion Hurdle. She was retired on Valentine's Day and has had several propositions already."

nToday's Sandown card is subject to a 7am inspection as heavy overnight rain is forecast.