MELEKHOV RALLIES TO WIN MAIDEN HURDLE
The Philip Hobbs-trained MELEKHOV (Sholokhov) rallied to justify favoritism in the maiden hurdle at Exeter on April 16th.
Second when last seen in March, the five-year-old was sent off favourite for the two mile and one furlong contest, with the ground described as good to soft. He was held up at the back of the 13 horse field by champion jockey Richard Johnson, picking off his rivals to go second after three out and began to chase down the leading mare Quick Wave. Digging deep, the bay ran on well to lead in the final 100 yards and win by a length, with the front pair finishing 14 lengths clear of the third.
Melekhov was adding to two bumper wins last season, each coming in partnership with Johnson. Bred by Patrick Fennessy, his full-brother sold to Noel Meade for €82,000 at last year’s Tattersalls Ireland Derby Sale.