Shishkin wins the Sporting Life Arkle Challenge Trophy Novices’ Chase and remains unbeaten in four races to give trainer Nicky Henderson his first win of the festival on opening day
- Shishkin wins the Sporting Life Arkle Challenge Trophy Novices’ Chase
- The Nicky Henderson-trained favourite put in another dominant performance
- This year’s Festival is taking place behind closed doors amid coronavirus
- CLICK HERE to follow all the day one action from Cheltenham Festival live
Shishkin justified his prohibitive odds when taking his winning streak to seven with an easy victory in the Sporting Life Arkle Challenge Trophy at Cheltenham.
Winner of the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle on this card 12 months ago, Shishkin is now unbeaten in four races over fences as he gave trainer Nicky Henderson a seventh Arkle – a race the Seven Barrows trainer has taken with stars such as Sprinter Sacre and Altior.
The 4-9 favourite was always travelling well in the hands of Nico de Boinville, as Allmankind and Captain Guinness made it a true-run race over the two miles.
Shishkin wins the Sporting Life Arkle Challenge Trophy Novices’ Chase at Cheltenham
Nicky Henderson’s brilliant novice stayed within touch of a strong pace set by both Allmankind and Captain Guinness, before pouncing to jump into the lead three out on the way to victory
Shishkin joined the two leaders at the third-last fence, setting sail for home and going on to score by 12 lengths.
Eldorado Allen picked up the pieces for second place close home, just ahead of Captain Guinness and Allmankind.
Shishkin was given a quote of 5-2 for next year’s Queen Mother Champion Chase with Coral and William Hill, while Paddy Power went 6-4.
Winning jockey Nico de Boinville told ITV Racing: ‘He’s a fantastic horse. Delighted to be here with the sun out.’
‘After that performance you could say he could be anything.’
Jockey Nico de Boinville celebrates atop of Shishkin after winning the first day’s second race
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