Webber content with House Island's run at Cheltenham
Mollington trainer Paul Webber was pleased with the run of House Island in Saturday's Grade 2 Ballymore Novices' Hurdle at Festival Trials Day at Cheltenham.
The six-year-old eventually finished fourth to Harry Senior after a front running display at Prestbury Park under Gavin Sheehan.
The Cropredy Lawn handler said: "I was very pleased with him, he had to do it the hard way. Gavin [Sheehan] thought the Irish horse was going to sit upsides to make things easier but that didn't happen so he had to do all the hard work.
"There was no point giving away ground away at the start which you then have to try and make up. He's just a laid back stayer but he he kept finding more and stayed on very well at the end."
The winner Harry Senior, trained by Colin Tizzard and ridden by Robbie Power, looks to be a horse very much going the right way and he was the authoritative winner of the Grade 2 Ballymore Novices' Hurdle.
The six-year-old was always travelling well and, after taking the lead approaching the final flight, stayed on strongly to deny 6/4 favourite King Roland by two and a quarter lengths.
Tizzard said: "Racing is a funny old world. We were gobsmacked that Slate House couldn't even complete the course [in the Paddy Power Cotswold Chase] and then this one has come and found, especially when the second swept by like he did. I thought we were playing for second, third or fourth. He is a lovely, big, strong stayer and a good horse on that form.
"He is more of a stayer than Fiddlerontheroof or any of my other novice hurdlers. This one could go up in trip and the rest could go back. I would have thought that we will go for the Albert Bartlett - we haven't got much else to run in that and this horse looks like a stayer. He got a bit tapped at the bottom of the hill and then stayed on strong."