Imperial Commander makes it a double at Cheltenham for sire FlemensfirthPICTURE: Edward Whitaker
Son of Flemensfirth
wins Paddy Power
IMPERIAL COMMANDER, a clean-jumping son of Flemensfirth, took the lead in the middle part of the Grade 3 Paddy Power Gold Cup Chase, and pricking his ears over the last two fences, went away to win with something in hand from Barbers Shop.
It proved to be a good day for Flemensfirth as he is also sire of Joe Lively, winner of the preceding Grade 3 Servo Computer Services Handicap Chase.
After the Paddy Power, winning jockey Paddy Brennan enthused: "That was a brilliant performance - he gave me some feel. I haven't ridden a horse like this in my life."
Trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies added: "That was the plan and it's lovely when a plan works out.
"His season last year was curtailed by growing pains and he would have possibly won a SunAlliance - but we made this the plan instead. He jumps, gallops and does everything.
"He's got plenty of class and that was only his fourth run over fences."
Imperial Commander hails from an unassuming background - he is out of a Le Moss mare, Ballinlovane, the winner of three point-to-points. She has had seven foals, two of which have run with Imperial Commander being her only winner so far. She is a half-sister to couple of point-to-point winners and one winner under Rules. The family does stretch back to Scottish National winner, Four Trix, under the fourth dam.
Bred by Laurence J. Flynn, Imperial Commander was sold as a yearling at Goffs December NH sale in 2002 by Bishopstown Stud for €4,000 to a cash buyer and was reconsigned as a four-year-old at the June National Hunt Sale in 2004 by Lismortagh Stables on behalf of John Hayes. Then he fetched €19,000 and was bought by
As a sire Flemensfirth is very much on an upward curve and despite the tough economic climate his progeny have been in some demand at the recent Tattersalls Ireland November NH Sale.
His coltout of Champion Hurdle third Bilboa fetched €95,000 when bought by agent Aiden Murphy for owner Graham Roach, while a filly offered by Mill House Stud and out of Cresswell Native made €83,000.
Flemensfirth's leading performer to date, the dual Grade 1 novice chase winner Tidal Bay, successfully returned to action earlier in November when winning an intermediate chase at Carlisle by 11 lengths from Rimsky.