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Annie Power wins Irish Stallion Farm EBF Mares Champion Hurdle

Updated: Saturday, 03 May 2014 17:06 | Comments

Annie Power with Ruby Walsh on board en route to winning at Punchestown
Annie Power with Ruby Walsh on board en route to winning at Punchestown

Annie Power emphatically returned to winning ways in the Irish Stallion Farm EBF Mares Champion Hurdle at Punchesown.

The Willie Mullins-trained six-year-old's spotless record was ended when second in the World Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, but she reminded everyone of her talents back on home territory and back against her own sex.

Sent off the 1-6 favourite back down in trip over two and a quarter miles, Annie Power made all of the running under Ruby Walsh, who extended his advantage at the top of the home straight.

Runner-up Jennies Jewel gave chase, but it was all in vain.

Mullins said: "Ruby wanted to be bold and jumped out and let her go on.

"We'll probably give her a break now as she's had a hard enough season.

"I'd love to see her jump those French hurdles but she's possibly done enough travelling this season.

"She was hanging off the rails a bit, which was a bit of a concern, but she's not raced right-handed that much.

"We didn't put in the earplugs today, either, so that could also be a reason for her hanging."

Abbyssial ran his rivals into the ground with a brilliant all-the-way win in the AES Champion Four-Year-Old Hurdle at Punchestown.

The 15-2 chance had fallen on his latest start in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham, giving Ruby Walsh a nasty injury, but Willie Mulins' charge made amends in fantastic fashion.

Plinth stayed on for second place behind the six-and-a-half-length winner, with the Nick Williams-trained Fox Norton third.

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