sport

Hard work for Boston

Boston Bob was made to pull out all the stops by You Must Know Me on his fencing debut in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Beginners' Chase.

Boston Bob was made to pull out all the stops by You Must Know Me on his fencing debut in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Beginners' Chase.

Willie Mullins' Boston Bob, second to the ill-fated Brindisi Breeze at Cheltenham in March, is already one of the favourites for the RSA Chase back at Prestbury Park.

Sent off the 1-5 favourite, Ruby Walsh was content to let Henry de Bromhead's You Must Know Me have an easy lead, but approaching the third-last Walsh was asking Boston Bob to get a bit closer.

Into the straight Boston Bob appeared to make the ground up easy enough but You Must Know Me would not lie down and in the end Walsh had to work as the odds-on shot prevailed by just half a length.

Paddy Power left the winner at 7-1 unchanged for the RSA Chase in March.

Walsh said: "It was harder than I expected this morning, but not harder than I expected after I'd gone down to the start.

"It was heavy at Cheltenham yesterday but not as bad as that.

"I was delighted with the way he jumped as for my money he'd been a bit careful at home, but today he was brilliant.

"Three miles will probably bring out the best in him. We've always thought he was a hell of a good horse.

"He's had a good start, a good clear round and he's won."

Mullins said: "He made hard work of that and his jumping probably kept him in the race. He wasn't impressive anyway.

"We'll see how he comes out of the race, but he won't be going to Leopardstown (at Christmas).

"It might take him some time to get over that so we won't make any plans at the moment."

Owega Star (4-1) stayed on dourly to land the Grade Two Tara Hurdle. Peter Fahey's charge was hard ridden in a battle with Maller Tree two out, but both looked sitting ducks for the even-money favourite, Un Beau Martin.

However, the grey took a crashing fall, leaving Owega Star and Andrew Leigh in front and they battled on gamely to account for Maller Tree.

Fahey said: "He really deserved that. If you look back through his form he has never run a bad race.

"He'll probably only have one or two more runs this season as I can't wait for next year over fences - he's a brilliant jumper.

"I'd say the plan will be to bring him back good and early over fences.

"Andrew gets on with him really well. He's not the easiest horse to ride and can mess around and whip around at the start.

"This was our Derby day today."