Reine Angevine clears a hurdle under on her way to victory under Paul Townend
©Healy Racing Photos
By Donal Murphy
Punters got it spot in the Follow Gowran Park On Facebook 4yo Novice Hurdle as the favourite Reine Angevine scored to provided Willie Mullins and Paul Townend with a quick fire opening race double.
The French bred daughter of Poligiote was 6/4 with Paddy Powers this morning and opened on-course at 11/8 before being backed into clear even money favourite at the off.
The Mouse Morris trained Rouge Angel opened the 10/11 favourite with Paddy Powers this morning but was friendless on track and went from 11/10 out to 13/8 at the off.
< Reine Angevine raced in second behind Bad Cigar for much of the contest before she took over in front before the fourth last hurdle.
She was in control from before the last and drew clear on the run-in to record an easy six length success.
The Willie Austin trained Blacklough looked a big threat to the winner early in the straight but he couldn’t match her and had to settle for second under Andrew Leigh at 4/1.
The morning favourite Rogue Angel never really looked like winning under Davy Russell and was beaten from before the straight eventually finishing fifteen lengths back in third.
Willie Mullins said afterwards: "She is improving all the time. After she won the last day I thought she needed good ground but she did a piece of work on heavy ground during the week and I couldn’t believe how well she worked.
"She will be kept to mares races now."
The winner can be backed at 33/1 for the Neptune Investments Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham with Stan James while she is 20/1 for the Albert Bartlett with the same firm.
(Additional reporting by Thomas Weekes)