Meath man Barry Geraghty won his second Cheltenham Gold Cup yesterday, this time on Bobs Worth, a horse he purchased as a yearling and sold to Nicky Henderson for just £20,000 as a three-year-old.
Bobs Worth became the first horse since Flying Bolt to win three different races at three consecutive Cheltenham Festivals following on from his Albert Bartlett and RSA Chase wins of the last two years.
As he passed the line, though, Geraghty was almost speechless: "I'd love to be happier, but all we can all think about is JT McNamara... What do we say? Let's just hope and pray to God he will be alright."
Of Bobs Worth he added: "He's a gorgeous horse with a great attitude. He struggled on the ground but he just keeps fighting. Three out I thought I had every chance – I just let him fill himself up, and two out I thought I should win. He is as game as a lion and he loves the job."
"Both horses ran fantastic races," Henderson said after what was his 50th Cheltenham Festival winner.
"Bobs Worth hasn't ran since the Hennessy and Long Run since the King George, so we did it all at home with the team at home.
"All the team have been brilliant and when it happens it's great."
Willie Mullins saddled Sir Des Champs to finish second under Tony McCoy and said: "It was a good run, his best of the season – probably a best run in his lifetime." Of the ground going against him late on, Mullins said: "I'm sure with the pedigree of Nicky Henderson's horse he wouldn't have been praying for that weather either so we won't be using that as an excuse.
"We were up in the van the whole way and if you'd asked me turning for home I thought we had a great chance at that stage, but the post is at the other end of the hill."
Mullins concluded: "We will be back next year and if we get better ground we will see what happens."
Twenty-year-old jockey Bryan Cooper has had a week he will simply never forget and although his double for Tony Martin on Benefficient and Ted Veale added to it, it is the success of Our Conor that was mind-blowing.
Dessie Hughes' juvenile hurdler was unbeaten going into yesterday's Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham and left the Cotswolds last night as the joint favourite for next year's Champion Hurdle.
Bounced out prominently from the outset, Our Conor cruised through to take up proceedings under Cooper and simply ran away from his seemingly competitive rivals to record an astonishing 15-length success.
Hughes twice won the Champion Hurdle with Hardy Eustace in the last decade and immediately afterwards he said of Our Conor: "He definitely looks a Champion Hurdle horse I think.
"I thought and hoped that he would win, but I never thought that he could win like that, I really didn't."
Of a Champion Hurdle campaign he added: "He was very impressive. He was showing us an awful lot since Leopardstown.
"He stays, he jumps and he is a very different horse to Hardy Eustace but he was also a very good jumper and this lad is too."
Our Conor will bid to extend his now-unbeaten hurdling record to five at Punchestown next month as he joins the growing list of Cheltenham winners to earmark that Festival.
Cooper's day got even better within 40 minutes as he was full of confidence on Ted Veale in the County Hurdle, which supplied Tony Martin with his second winner of the meeting.