Irish Daily Mirror Novice Hurdle
Grade 1, Punchestown 16:55
€100,000 added,
4yo, 3m,
Class 1   
Wednesday 25th April 2018


1 Next Destination 5/4F
2 Delta Work 7/1
3 Kilbricken Storm 5/1
11 ran Distances: nk, nk, 20l
Time: 6m 16.00s (slow by 40.00s)

Next Destination just about holds off Kilbricken Storm and Delta Work to win

Next Destination
© Caroline Norris
Next Destination
After an opening day to forget at the 2018 Punchestown Festival, jockey Paul Townend bounced back in the best possible fashion this afternoon with a Grade 1 victory. Townend sensationally ran out at the final fence of the Growise Novices’ Chase on Tuesday aboard Al Boum Photo, with the race seemingly at his mercy, but landed the Grade 1 today on Next Destination. The 5/4 favourite got up by a neck from Delta Work with the same distance back to the Colin Tizzard-trained Kilbricken Storm.
Townend had got on the scoresheet for the day when winning the previous race, the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel Hurdle, aboard the Willie Mullins-trained Pravalaguna.
Speaking about Next Destination, Mullins said: “That was a great performance from both horse and rider. Paul has been cool under pressure in the last two races. I am delighted for him and the crowd are delighted for him, which shows how well thought of he is over here.
“I think that was an amazing bit of riding. Paul’s totally focused and it’s paying off. What more can I say other than it’s a fantastic day for him. That was a tough call there, especially with the horse on the inside of him going so well but he got him at it early and then once he got him at it he needed to jump the last (well). He got the horse in the right position at the last and then won. 
“He’s a tough horse. He won over two and a half, and I wondered could he go back (to two miles). He’s such a slick jumper but actually just settling him over a trip is the best thing to do. When he gets down to gallop, he’s got a huge long stride and I think that’s what paid off. Paul had to get at him a bit earlier because Colin’s horse (Kilbricken Storm) was going so well on the inside but once he just lengthened his stride, he got Colin’s horse at it and once he got him at it, there was a great chance he could win and he got his last jump (perfect).”
Townend added: “He was tough, he saw out that three miles well. I got involved plenty early on him, I don’t know if it was the third last or the second last, but once I got him going he was genuine and he stayed going.  I wasn’t sure if I’d get there, coming off the bend and going down to the last, but as I got to the wings of the last I was getting more confident and then one started rattling down the outside (Delta Work) which made me sweat a bit but in fairness to the horse he pulled it out. It was a great race to ride in. I’d imagine the plan will be that he will go chasing next year. We’ll sit down and talk about it but he rides like a chaser.”
After winning the previous race, Townend said: “The reception there meant a lot. I am trying to put yesterday behind me now and move on. We have a job to do today, which is the mentality I came with. Thankfully, that [winner] takes a bit of weight off of our shoulders. I have commented on it [what happened yesterday] and don’t want to say anymore about it. I want to put it behind me now and move forward. I have a lot of good people behind me, which means a lot in this game. Racing is good as a lot of people rally around you. Pravalaguna had a good run the last day when she stuck at it well. The step back up to two and a half today suited her. I guess things fell right for her.”
Mullins added: “Paul is a popular guy and that was shown by the reception he got. I’m delighted that what happened yesterday didn’t dent his confidence. He waited for the gap and did it right, I thought he was so cool there. That’s how good he is and a measure of the man. The winner is a good mare but she has just been a bit unlucky. He kept her travelling sweetly.”

Irish Daily Mirror Novice Hurdle (Grade 1)
€100,000 added, 4yo plus, 3m, Class 1
11 ran
Going: Yielding, Yielding to Soft in places

Pos D Horse SP Jockey Weight Trainer Age
1st Next Destination (IRE) 5/4f P Townend
W P Mullins 6
2nd nk Delta Work (FR) 7/1 D N Russell
G Elliott 5
3rd nk Kilbricken Storm (IRE) 5/1 H Cobden
C L Tizzard 7
4th 20 Ballyward (IRE) 8/1 D J Mullins
W P Mullins 6
5th Discorama (FR) 20/1 K C Sexton
P Nolan 5
6th Brahma Bull (IRE) 16/1 N D Fehily
W P Mullins 7
7th nk Blow By Blow (IRE) 12/1 J W Kennedy
G Elliott 7
8th Jetz (IRE) 10/1 R M Power
Mrs J Harrington 6
9th ½ General Consensus 100/1 Mr J Drinkwater
S Drinkwater 6
10th ½ The Conditional (IRE) 100/1 A E Lynch
Martin Hassett 6
PU Lackaneen Leader (IRE) 25/1 M P Walsh
G Elliott 6

Free Racing Tips


Year Horse Age/Wt Owner Trainer Jockey SP
2017 Champagne Classic 6-11-10 Gigginstown House Stud Gordon Elliott Bryan Cooper 14/1
2016 Bellshill 6-11-10 Andrea & Graham Wylie Willie Mullins Ruby Walsh 2/1 Fav
2015 Killultagh Vic 6-11-10 Mrs R Boyd, Mrs M J Willie Mullins Paul Townend 8/1
Armstrong, J B Anderson
2014 Beat That 6-11-10 Michael Buckley Nicky Henderson GB Barry Geraghty 11/8 Fav
2013 Morning Assembly 6-11-10 Clipper Logistics Ltd Pat Fahy Davy Condon 14/1
2012 Marasonnien 6-11-10 Susannah Ricci Willie Mullins Paul Townend 12/1
2011 Askanna 6-11-01 John Asple Colin Bowe Mr Barry O’Neill 33/1
2010 Rigour Back Bob 5-11-07 Gaticoma Syndicate Edward O’Grady Barry Geraghty 6/1
2009 The Midnight Club 8-11-06 C C R Racing Syndicate Willie Mullins Emmet Mullins 7/4Fav
2008 Got Attitude 5-11-05 David Reid Scott Jessica Harrington Barry Geraghty 16/1

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