Herald Champion Novice Hurdle
Grade 1, Punchestown 16:20
Race Value: €100,000
5yo plus
2m, Class1  
Tuesday 26th April 2016

Free Racing Tips

1 Don't Touch It 16/1
2 Petit Mouchoir 11/2
3 Brain Power 20/1
6 ran Distances: ½l, 4½l, 7½l
TIME 4m 3.20s (slow by 18.20s)

A shock in the Herald Novice Hurdle as Don't Touch It claims the win in fighting fashion. Yorkhill only 4th.

Don't Touch It
© Caroline Norris
Don't Touch It

Yorkhill was a well-held fourth as Don't Touch It held off Petit Mouchoir in a thriller.

Jessica Harrington's horse perhaps showed the benefits of bypassing both Cheltenham and Aintree as he tenaciously fought back to deny Petit Mouchoir and land a first Grade One success.

© Caroline Norris

Yorkhill, a brilliant winner of both the Neptune and Mersey Novices' Hurdle and unbeaten in six previous starts, proved a major disappointment, jumping left at several flights and never threatening to land a serious blow.

Charbel took the field along at a good gallop, pursued by Petit Mouchoir and Brain Power, with a wide gap back to Yorkhill who raced alongside the eventual winner for much of the race.

With the below-par favourite beaten soon after a mistake as the pace began to quicken, Brain Power moved powerfully at the head of affairs only to be passed by Don't Touch It, who then fought back after getting in close to the last and allowing Petit Mouchoir to briefly hit the front.

Horses 468x60 Jpg

Don't Touch It (16/1) passed the post half a length in front of Petit Mouchoir (11/2), whose stablemate Yorkhill was allowed to come home in his own time.

Winning rider Barry Geraghty said: "We went a strong gallop and they kind of died around me and I was left in front sooner than ideal.

"He had a look going to the last, but he rallied well and it was a good performance.

"Jessie thought he had a chance and thought it was the right race for him, so it was a good call by her."

It was a notable victory for the jockey, who was only able to ride at the meeting after his appeal against a ban incurred at Limerick was successful.

Harrington said: "I always felt that better ground would bring out the best in him. He got bogged down the last day and had to miss an intended engagement at Fairyhouse with an infection in his leg. We trained him for here, and he's done us proud.

"It's great when the horses are running well and it can be infectious for the whole yard.

"That was a hell of a step up as he'd only won a maiden hurdle.

"He jumped great off that ground. They went fast in front but he cruised into it and Barry said he got lairy in front, but then went on again when the other horse came to him."

The Herald Champion Novice Hurdle
€100,000 added, 5yo plus, 2m, Class 1
6 ran
Going: Good to Yielding, Yielding in places

Pos D Horse SP Jockey Weight Trainer Age
1st Don't Touch It (IRE) 16/1 B J Geraghty
Mrs J Harrington 6
2nd ½ Petit Mouchoir (FR) 11/2 B J Cooper
W P Mullins 5
3rd Brain Power (IRE) 20/1 D J Mullins
N J Henderson 5
4th Yorkhill (IRE) 4/9f R Walsh
W P Mullins 6
5th 12 Charbel (IRE) 13/2 D Bass
K C Bailey 5
6th Ball D'arc (FR) 25/1 D N Russell
G Elliott 5

Cheltenham £50 Bonus

Past Results:

Year Horse/SP Age/Wt Owner Trainer Jockey
2015 Douvan 1/6F 5-11-12
Susannah Ricci
Willie Mullins Ruby Walsh
2014 Faugheen 1/2F 6-11-12
Susannah Ricci
Willie Mullins Ruby Walsh
2013 Jezki 2/1 5-11-12
J P McManus
Jessica Harrington Barry Geraghty
2012 Alderwood 5/2 8-11-12
J P McManus
Tom Mullins A P McCoy
2011 Shot From The Hip 11/2 7-11-12
J P McManus
Edward O’Grady A P McCoy
2010 Blackstair
Susannah Ricci
Willie Mullins Paul Townend
2009 Hurricane Fly 4/6 Fav 5-11-12
George Creight
on/Rose Boyd Willie Mullins Ruby Walsh
2008 Jered 7/4 Fav 6-11-12
J P McManus
Noel Meade A P McCoy
2007 Clopf 7/4 Fav 6-11-12
Bernard Heffernan
Edward O’Grady Barry Geraghty
2006 Iktitaf 8/1 5-11-11
Mrs Pat Sloan
Noel Meade Ruby Walsh
2005 Wild Passion 7/4 Fav 5-11-11
Des Sharkey
Noel Meade Paul Carberry
2004 Brave Inca 2/1 Fav 6-11-12
Novices Syndicate
Colm Murphy Barry Cash
2003 Back In Front 4/11 Fav 6-11-12
Dermot Cox
Edward O’Grady Norman Williamson
2002 Scottish Memories 11/4 6-11-12
Mary Halligan
Noel Meade Paul Carberry
*2001 Ned Kelly 4/5 Fav 5-11-11
Sue Magnier
Edward O’Grady Norman Williamson
2000 Moscow Flyer 10/1 6-12-00 Brian Kearney Jessica Harrington Barry Geraghty
1999 Cardinal Hill 1/2 Fav 5-11-13
J P McManus
Noel Meade Charlie Swan
1998 His Song 6/4 5-11-13
David Lloyd
Mouse Morris A P McCoy
1997 Midnight Legend 7/4 Fav 6-12-00
Hilda Clarke
David Nicholson GB Richard Johnson
1996 Dance Beat 7/2 5-11-08
Mrs E Queally
Jessica Harrington John Shortt
1995 Hotel Minella 5/4 Fav 8-12-00
John J Nallen
Aidan O’Brien Charlie Swan
1994 Klairon Davis 7/4 Fav 5-11-13
Chris Jones
Arthur Moore Tom Horgan
1993 Bayrouge 7/2 5-11-08
Joe Crowley
Anne-Marie O’Brien Richard Dunwoody
1992 Fortune And Fame 11/4 Fav 5-11-13
Michael Smurfit
Dermot Weld Brendan Sheridan
1991 Young Pokey 5/2 6-12-00
Maurice Oberstein
Oliver Sherwood GB Jamie Osborne
1990 Vestris Abu 5/2 4-10-05
Mrs C Shubotham
Jim Bolger Charlie Swan
1989 The Proclamation 9/2 6-10-13
J M Whaley
Paddy Prendergast Richard Dunwoody
1988 El-Sid Senor 9/4 Fav 5-11-07
T Miley
Francis Flood Frank Berry
1987 High Plains 8/1 5-11-05
Raymond Mould
David Nicholson GB Richard Dunwoody
1986 Barney Burnett Evs Fav 6-11-09
P Donovan
Ruby Walsh Brendan Sheridan
1985 Hungary Hur 5/1 6-11-06
Mrs A Fegan
Paddy Mullins Tony Mullins
1984 Gav’s Delight 2/5 Fav 6-11-07
N McGrady
Michael Cunningham Ken Morgan
1983 Dawn Run 5/2 Fav 5-11-07
Mrs Charmian Hill
Paddy Mullins Tony Mullins
1982 Bustineto 5/2 4-10-05
Timothy Kinsella
Mick O’Toole Niall Madden
1981 Tie Anchor 2/1 Fav 4-10-09
Daniel Hale
Paddy Prendergast Tommy McGivern
1980 Deep Gale 7/1 7-11-08
J P McManus
Edward O’Grady Mr Frank Codd