A Media Luz shows up in more flattering light

There is a world of difference between the midsummer elegance of French Oaks day at Chantilly, to the backdrop of the Grandes Ecuries and petit château, and a wet winter afternoon's jumping in the Cambridgeshire mud alongside the A14. But the pretty filly A Media Luz finally made the transition with her first hurdles victory since her transfer from the stable of Yannick Fouin in Maisons-Laffitte to that of Nicky Henderson in the more robust environment of the Lambourn Downs.

The four-year-old, who had finished a creditable sixth in the Prix de Diane on her last outing in her homeland, has always been highly regarded as an obstacles prospect chez Henderson, but had a somewhat roller-coaster introduction to her new craft. First time out at Cheltenham, she proved too headstrong, running away with no less a rider than Barry Geraghty; next up at Newbury she had the misfortune to come up against her own more talented stablemate Grandouet; and at Kempton last month she was poised for victory only to take a crashing fall.

Here yesterday, though, she restored her reputation as, once again aided by the calming effect of a pair of blue sponge rubber earplugs, she outclassed her four rivals, settling kindly for Geraghty before galloping home powerfully by 18 lengths. All went well, possibly even too well.

Her prime target at next month's Cheltenham Festival is not the Triumph Hurdle, for which Grandouet is favourite, but the Fred Winter Handicap Hurdle, for which she has now hardened at the head of the market. "I hope that hasn't screwed up Plan A," Henderson said. "I'm worried that she looked a bit too impressive today. I don't think it was a very good race and I hope the handicapper sees that. I'd rather not run her in the Triumph; the Fred Winter is where she belongs. Grandouet beat her comfortably at Newbury and there's no reason to doubt that form."

A Media Luz provided Henderson with the milestone of his 1,999th domestic jumping winner; the landmark of the 2,000th may be found at Kempton this afternoon, where his three runners include the classy chaser Punchestowns. If it does, it cannot be honoured in time-honoured Seven Barrows style, for in February the trainer takes an annual pledge. "I'd like to have celebrated it when it comes," he said, "but I'd rather not have to wait until next month."

Turf account

Sue Montgomery's Nap

Stormy Weather (3.00 Musselburgh) On the same mark as when fifth at last year's Cheltenham Festival. On ground that suits should be good enough.

Next best

Ravethebrave (4.20 Kempton)

One to watch

Fourjacks (T Easterby) Found one too good on last week's hurdling debut, but only just and will hit the target.

Where the money's going

Ruby Walsh is 11-10 favourite with Ladbrokes to make it four Cheltenham Festival jockey titles in a row.

Chris McGrath's Nap

Sweet Irony (2.35 Kempton)

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Games Developer - HTML5

£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: With extensive experience and a...

Recruitment Genius: Personal Tax Senior

£26000 - £34000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Product Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Due to on-going expansion, this leading provid...

Recruitment Genius: Shift Leaders - Front of House Staff - Full Time and Part Time

£6 - £8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join a family ...

Day In a Page

A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms
What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist? Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories

What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist?

Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories
Chinese web dissenters using coded language to dodge censorship filters and vent frustration at government

Are you a 50-center?

Decoding the Chinese web dissenters
The Beatles film Help, released 50 years ago, signalled the birth of the 'metrosexual' man

Help signalled birth of 'metrosexual' man

The Beatles' moptop haircuts and dandified fashion introduced a new style for the modern Englishman, says Martin King
Hollywood's new diet: Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?

Hollywood's new diet trends

Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?
6 best recipe files

6 best recipe files

Get organised like a Bake Off champion and put all your show-stopping recipes in one place
Ashes 2015: Steven Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Middlesex bowler claims Ashes hat-trick of Clarke, Voges and Marsh
Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Atwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works