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Leech secures Helium for £13,000 at Ascot

SIX days after finishing second in a Fontwell novices’ chase, Helium changed hands for £13,000 at Ascot’s November Sale on Wednesday when joining Sophie Leech.

The six-year-oldhad finished third for trainer Nick Gifford in the 2009 Adonis Hurdle at Kempton and his form over the smaller obstacles particularly attracted Leech’s husband Christian, a former British Horseracing Board handicapper.

"He ran very well last time but I think the pick of his hurdles form is better than over fences," said Christian Leech. "He wants soft ground and, although we’ve got somegood summer jumpers, we are a little short of ammunition for the winter.

"He’s been sold to an existing owner in the yard and he’s ready to go on with."

The best horse on show was Church Island, who had earned his connections nearly £300,000 in prize money thanks to efforts that included victories in the Bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown and a second place in the Irish Grand National.

The now 12-year-old finished last in the Kerry National in September on his most recent start for trainer Michael Hourigan and sold for just £3,000 on Wednesday.

The sale began with its usual collection of yearlings being largely qualified for auction races and among them was an Ishiguru colt who returned to Rod Millman’s stable after making £15,000.

Read the full report in Thursday's Racing Post




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