Racing: His Song tunes up for Arkle assignment

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The Independent Online
HIS SONG will be aimed at Leopardstown's Arkle Cup after bouncing back to form when readily justifying favouritism in the pounds 40,000 Denny Gold Medal Novice Chase at the Dublin course yesterday.

Suffering from an infection when beaten by Gutteridge at Punchestown, the Mouse Morris-trained five-year-old quickened away from the field in the hands of Shay Barry.

Except for a mistake in the final mile, the winner gave his supporters no worries and came home eight lengths ahead of Native Estates. Morris said: "We will get the Irish Arkle over us first before thinking about Cheltenham."

Meanwhile, Knife Edge stamped himself the leading Irish three-year-old hurdler when overcoming trouble in running in the pounds 20,000 Denny Hurdle. An easy winner on his jumping debut for the Michael O'Brien stable at Clonmel, Knife Edge showed courage in bad ground to beat the favourite, Golden Rule,despite being hampered twice.

Tom Rudd's mount was tightened up before, and after, the second last, yet still managed to defeat Golden Rule with a degree of authority on the stiff climb to the post.

O'Brien said: "He has switched on to the jumping game since we bought him out of Sir Michael Stoute's stable and gelded him in the summer. That was the first time he came under pressure in a race but he answered the call well."

Limerick's Christmas fixture has been abandoned due to waterlogging. Yesterday's meeting was called off and, with no prospect of improved weather, officials decided there is no hope of racing on the remaining days of the meeting. They, therefore, abandoned racing today, tomorrow and and Tuesday.

Random Harvest put up an immaculate display of jumping at Wetherby to land the Rowland Meyrick Handicap Chase.

The race had been depleted by the defections of The Grey Monk (banged joint) and Colonel In Chief (ground unsuitable). But, despite just four runners remaining, the event was still competitive. Random Harvest was in the lead or disputed the lead for much of the extended three-mile journey and, by the time he reached the straight for the final time, only The Last Fling remained a serious rival. River Lossie was struggling in third, while the favourite Strath Royal had been pulled up. Maintaining his gallop, Random Harvest sealed victory with a super leap at the final fence.