Report: Leopardstown, Sunday
Deloitte Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m2f
WILLIE MULLINS saddled six as he chased a fifth straight win in the Deloitte so there was no surprise he was celebrating after the race, but victory for unheralded 12-1 chance Bacardys was rather more unpredictable.
The market predicted Saturnas, partnered by Ruby Walsh, would be the one to lead home the Mullins battalion but he never looked like adding a second Grade 1 to his CV, coming under pressure long before the home straight.
Bacardys, partnered by amateur rider Patrick Mullins, was also under the pump as the field turned for home, with stablemate Bunk Off Early looking by far the most likely winner under Paul Townend.
He jumped to the front at the last but Bacardys was finding plenty for pressure down the outside and came with a power-packed finish to land the knockout blow.
The winner, who crossed the line three-quarters of a length clear of 11-2 chance Bunk Off Early, was cut to 7-1 (from 14) for the Neptune Investment Novices’ Hurdle at the festival next month.
Brelade, trained by Noel Meade, made sure Willie Mullins did not complete a 1-2-3, while Saturnas finished a distant last as the 5-4 favourite.
More to follow . . .
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