Cheltenham Festival: Lord Windermere gives Jim Culloty emotional first Festival win
Best Mate's jockey Jim Culloty gained an emotional first Festival winner as a trainer with Lord Windermere in the RSA Chase.
Culloty will forever be remembered as the man who rode Best Mate to three victories in the Gold Cup in 2002, 2003 and 2004, earning legendary status at Prestbury Park.
As well as the legendary Arkle, past winners of RSA Chase who have gone on to land the Gold Cup include Mandarin, Ten Up, Garrison Savannah, Looks Like Trouble and Arkle.
And Culloty can now start dreaming of returning next year for a crack at jump racing's blue riband event with Lord Windermere.
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Ridden by Davy Russell, Lord Windermere seized the initiative after the leader Boston Bob fell at the final fence and the 8-1 chance went on to score by a length and a quarter from Lyreen Legend.
"Davy gave him a great ride," said Culloty. "He wasn't getting any light and the horse jumped brilliantly – he's a good horse.
"We took the chance of not running him over three miles all season until today because I didn't want to tire him out and it has worked.
"I knew that he would like Cheltenham. I could have brought him here last year and he would have run a big race in a hurdle, but we minded him because we wanted a big chaser, which is what he is
Culloty said training racehorses was completely different than riding them and he had found it hard to watch the race.
"As a jockey you get nervous half an hour before the race but as a trainer you are nervous for six months beforehand," he said.
"You get up and feed the horses every morning and I always look out to see how he is as he is the best horse I have.
"I was a nervous wreck watching the race today. I went out to walk the course on my own earlier because I didn't want to talk to anybody."