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  News Sternrubin leads Newbury rivals a merry dance

Sternrubin leads Newbury rivals a merry dance

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Richard Johnson made all the running on Sternrubin in the bet365 Intermediate Hurdle at Newbury.

Richard Johnson made all the running on Sternrubin in the bet365 Intermediate Hurdle at Newbury.

Having ended a frustrating run of seconds with victory at Exeter in May, that obviously worked wonders for his confidence as he never saw another rival in the race better known as the Gerry Feilden.

Top-weight John Constable and Ch'Tibello moved up menacingly at the second-last, but Johnson had plenty up his sleeve.

Sternrubin (4-1) kicked clear again and Philip Hobbs' charge kept up the gallop for a four-length win over John Constable, who shaped well under his big weight.

Johnson said: "He's settled down since last year and while he still wears a hood he didn't do too much in front.

"That small race at Exeter he won did him the world of good.

"You can't do too much on this ground as it's a long way up the straight. He coped with the ground well.

"Two miles on soft ground is what he enjoys."

Owner Terry Warner said: "Normally we have a plan, but I've no idea where he'll go next until I speak to Philip. We said a month ago this would be his target."