Astounding performance from Un De Sceaux
Un De Sceaux and Ruby Walsh
(Healy Racing Photos)
Bringing up a treble for Willie Mullins (at odds of 7/2) after Hurricane Fly and Un Atout, Un De Sceaux did what ninety nine point nine percent of horses can't do – he refused to settle but still bolted in.
However from before the straight it was clear the pursuers wouldn't trouble the 5/4 favourite. He cruised clear approaching the last to impressively account for Moscow Mannon by thirteen lengths.
Unfortunately the Sean O'Brien yard, who has been having a decent run of things lately, suffered a dreadful blow when their lovely young prospect, Wedding Present suffered a very serious injury in the back straight.
The Mullins summation this time went as follows: "We might have found another one.
"I'm delighted for Eddie (O'Connell, the winning owner). He's been looking for a nice horse for a while.
"Turban won for him last week and he looks to have a real nice horse here.
"The twice he's ran for us it was on this sort of ground. I hope he's not dependent on it but even if he is we'll put up with it.
"I would imagine we'll keep him hurdling.
"If he jumps fences like that he could be exciting.
"We'll think about it during the summer. We have no immediate plans for him – he'll probably go to grass.
"As you can see he's quite hard on himself. He probably wouldn't want much further.
"If he does as good as Arvika (Ligeonniere, last year's winner here) he'll be alright.
"They have the same style of running." (GC & EM)
There were only three runners but the Grade 1 Tattersalls Ireland Champion Novice Hurdle served up a thrilling finale as Un Atout beat English raider Ubak (supplemented at a cost of 8K) by a neck at Punchestown.