Top Bandit in charge at the last© Photo Healy Racing
Top Bandit delivered in the rated novice hurdle at Punchestown to give Gordon Elliott a brace of winners.
Davy Russell rode a patient race on the 2/1 favourite who moved menacingly well in second after the penultimate hurdle.
He soon got to grips with Dark Spark and asserted before the last. The five-year-old gelding idled a tad on the run-in but was driven out to win by two and a half lengths. Sit Down Lucy kept finding after two out and ran on close home for a never nearer second at 5/1.
Stable representative Aidan O'Ryan said: “He's a grand horse and is improving away the whole time. I'm sure Gordon will find something similar for him and his future will be over the big ones (fences).”
Elliott also took the Grade 2 novice chase with Riviere D'etel
Additional reporting by Gary Carson