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Envoi Allen surgery is successful

Connections of Envoi Allen are looking forward to the future after the star chaser underwent surgery this week.

Unbeaten in his first 11 starts under rules, the Cheveley Park Stud-owned gelding met with defeat for the first time when falling as he sought a third win at the Cheltenham Festival in March.

Hopes were high he could bounce back to his brilliant best for a much-anticipated clash with Monkfish in Punchestown’s Dooley Insurance Group Champion Novice Chase last month.

However, Henry de Bromhead’s charge was struggling a long way from home before eventually being pulled up by Rachael Blackmore, while Monkfish failed to reel in his stablemate Colreevy.

Envoi Allen was found to be lame post-race, and a subsequent CT scan at Fethard Equine Hospital revealed he had chipped a joint.

“Surgery was performed successfully, and the vets seem very happy,” said Cheveley Park’s managing director Chris Richardson.

“He obviously suffered the injury when standing miles off one of those early fences at Punchestown.

“It took a while for the swelling to go down. But surgery has now been performed, and he can now have a nice holiday and hopefully come back later in the year.”

Classic Getaway emerged as another exciting addition to Cheveley Park’s National Hunt string when making a successful debut under rules in a bumper at Tipperary on Tuesday.

The five-year-old, who cost an eye-watering £570,000 after winning his sole start in the point-to-point field, pulled 15 lengths clear on his first start for Willie and Patrick Mullins – and will now enjoy a summer break.

Richardson added: “He’s such a good-looking horse with a lovely classic head and lovely long ears.

“Patrick was very happy with him. He gave him a nice introduction, and we can look forward to next season.

“He didn’t really know what to do in the final stages of the race, and I’m sure he’ll learn a lot from that.”

Classic Getaway after his Tipperary win
Classic Getaway after his Tipperary win (PA)

The same trainer-owner combination is set to unleash another expensive recruit at Punchestown on Saturday, with £430,000 purchase Grangeclare West lining up for the Ladbrokes (Pro/Am) INH Flat Race.

Richardson said: “I don’t think he’s in the same league as Classic Getaway – but he’s a nice horse, and we’ll learn a bit more.

“We’re spoilt with the really good horses that we’ve got at the moment. Hopefully he’s another one to look forward to.

“We’ll get a run into him, and then put him away.”

Classic Getaway makes winning start for new connections

Expensive purchase Classic Getaway made a successful debut under rules in the concluding bumper at Tipperary on Tuesday.

Having impressed on his sole start in the point-to-point field in November, the five-year-old was bought for the eye-watering sum of £570,000 the following month by leading bloodstock agent Tom Malone and trainer Gordon Elliott.

With owners Cheveley Park Stud removing all their horses in Elliott’s care in early March, Classic Getaway joined Willie Mullins and was unsurprisingly all the rage on his first start for the champion trainer in the Junction INH Flat Race.

Ridden by champion amateur Patrick Mullins, the imposing gelding travelled well for much of the two-and-a-half-mile contest before easing clear early in the home straight.

The 4-9 favourite looked green when asked to go about his business, but was ultimately in a different league to his rivals – passing the post with 15 lengths in hand over 40-1 shot Bolintlea.

The winning rider said: “He is a beautiful-looking horse, and I think he was a little bit more expensive than a Rolls Royce Phantom! But I’m pretty sure Mrs (Patricia) Thompson (owner of Cheveley Park) will get more fun out of him than a Rolls Royce.

“He’s a big baby and that’s why I was keen to teach him and get him to stride out. He is a big baby at home for a five-year-old who had a point to point run and he’s not a bumper horse.

“I imagine he’ll go jumping later in the season – he wouldn’t have run, only the ground was so wet and we said we’d get a run into him.

“Willie didn’t rush him and let him settle in. He didn’t have to run this season, but it just happened with the weather.

“I think he’ll continue to improve mentally.”