Canaly (far side) leads Mallowney over the last
©Healy Racing Photos
By Michael Graham
Canaly switched back to hurdles to great effect in Punchestown when staying on well to land the two and a half mile handicap hurdle with Bryan Cooper in the saddle.
He had been chasing and picked up a win just over two weeks ago in a beginners’ chase at Fairyhouse, but the smaller obstacles were negotiated just as well today for a length and three parts victory.
Dessie Hughes was the successful trainer and he said: “He was good the last day when he won his beginners’ chase. It was a question of where to go at this time of year as the novices are so hot.
“He had dropped him a bit over hurdles from what he was at at his best. It was a chance to win another one with him.
“Hopefully he’ll be able to compete in the novices (chases) later in Spring.”
The winner went off at 9/1 (from 12s in early trading). Mallowney picked up a runners-up prize at 25/1 while Call Rog, the 2/1 favourite, occupied the third berth.
This winner gave Dessie Hughes an across-the-card double after Chasing Shadows justified 6/4 favouritism in the opener at Tramore.
(Additional reporting by Gary Carson)