Synchronised rules in Gold Cup
Synchronised landed a dramatic race for the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup in the hands of champion jockey Tony McCoy.
The 8-1 shot, owned by JP McManus and trained by Jonjo O'Neill, only took the lead after jumping the last and galloped on strongly to head The Giant Bolster (50-1) and strike by two and a quarter lengths, with last year's winner Long Run, the 7-4 favourite, only third - another three-quarters of a length away.
Dual winner Kauto Star was pulled up at the ninth fence by Ruby Walsh after losing his place.
O'Neill, who was securing his first Gold Cup as a trainer, said: "AP was brilliant on him, he knows him so well. Our big worry was keeping him in the race as, if he makes mistakes, he gets behind.
"A lot of work has gone into him at home so was a great team effort from the yard. It's fantastic to win it as a trainer. It's a big team effort."
McCoy said: "It's great for Jonjo and JP McManus. He's really delivered today. He was off the bridle the whole way and when I missed the third-last I thought my chance had gone."
McCoy, who was securing his second Gold Cup victory after Mr Mulligan struck in 1997, added: "He's an amazing horse and it was an amazing performance. I'm so pleased to win it for JP as he's been so good to me.
"Jonjo has done an incredible job. I've got a Grand National and a Gold Cup out of the man and I love him to bits. Jackdaws Castle looks a closed shop with JP and just a few other owners and I can't understand why he doesn't get more horses."
McManus had never before won a Gold Cup, and was understandably jubilant.
He said: "It's a very special day, a very special moment - for Jonjo, for AP and for their families. It gives everybody a great lift and I just feel very, very proud."