Derby heroes to the fore on a thrilling second day at Cheltenham Festival
The updated standings as unheralded Sandmason continues good week
It may be the pinnacle of jumps racing but it was Epsom heroes who came to the fore on Wednesday, with three Cheltenham winners, all of whom had won at the festival before, being sired by Derby winners.
Altior - a son of High Chaparral and Key Of Luck mare Monte Solaro - powered clear up the hill in the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase, to add to his previous festival wins in the 2016 Supreme Novices' Hurdle and last year's Racing Post Arkle Novices' Chase.
Bred by Paddy Behan, Altior joined the likes of Bobs Worth and Vautour, having now won three different Grade 1s at the meeting.
Min, who chased home Altior as he did in the Supreme, is by the 2005 Derby runner-up Walk In The Park, whose other son Douvan fell four out when travelling strongly in the same contest.
Presenting Percy, a seven-year-old son of Sir Percy and Presenting mare Hunca Munca, added to his Pertemps Final victory at the festival last year with a resolute win in the RSA Insurance Novices' Chase. In doing so he became the second winner this week out of a daughter of the late Rathbarry Stud stalwart, after Rathvinden won the marathon National Hunt Chase on Tuesday.
Another of Presenting's daughters, Knotted Midge, is responsible for Timico Gold Cup favourite Might Bite, who rescued victory from the jaws of defeat in last year's RSA.
LEADING SIRES AT THE CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL 2018
|Truth Or Dare||1|
|Walk In The Park||1|
|Lope De Vega||1|
|Robin Des Champs||1|
Tiger Roll, one of two winners for his sire Authorized at last year's meeting when winning the National Hunt Chase, showed a spring in his step to win the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase.
Earlier in a remarkable day, Samcro put in an emphatic display of jumping in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle to become the fourth Cheltenham Festival for his sire Germany - following Captain Cee Bee, Faugheen and Tiger Cry.
Black Op, the second of two festival runners for Sandmason after Supreme scorer Summerville Boy, ran Samcro closest to make it a Grade 1 first and second for the 2001 Hardwicke Stakes scorer.
Both Fast Company and Special Kaldoun recorded their first festival winners - with Veneer Of Charm springing a 33-1 surprise in the Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle for the former and Bleu Berry holding on by a neck in the Coral Cup for the latter.
Just as on Tuesday, Irish-breds filled the podium in the opening and closing races - with Willie Mullins astonishingly training the first three home in the Weatherbys Champions Bumper.
The winner Relegate maintained his unbeaten record - including a valuable bumper success at Leopardstown in early February - to complete a one-three for his sire Flemensfirth, who also supplied the winner of the same race 14 years earlier with Total Enjoyment.
Meanwhile, the Spanish suffix was carried by Nube Negra, the first festival runner for the 2007 Spanish Derby third Dink, and he travelled strongly for a long way before fading to third in the Fred Winter.
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