Quevega Mares Hurdle
Listed, Punchestown 13:40
€32,500 added,
4yo plus, 2m 4f,
Class 1    
Wednesday 19th February 2020


1 Elfile 6/4
2 Black Tears 4/1
3 Laurina 11/8F
5 ran Distances: 2½l, ¾l, 6l
Time: 5m 20.40s (slow by 40.40s)

The two Willie Mullins-trained inmates had the five-runner race between them after three out before Laurina’s challenge flattened out on the run-in.

Elfile was too strong for Laurina and pulled away to score by two and a half lengths from Black Tears, who stayed on to claim second place by three-quarters of a length.

Laurina, who took this Grade Three prize in 2019, was on a retrieval mission after being pulled up twice over fences.

Mullins said: “That was a good performance by the winner and will probably book her ticket for the Mares’ Hurdle. I’d like to go there and I don’t think there is any other race for her in Cheltenham. 

“She’s improving and probably has a future over fences next season. A longer trip would be better for her.”

Elfile was cut to 14-1 from 20-1 for the Close Brothers Hurdle, registered as the David Nicholson Mares’ Hurdle, at Cheltenham with Coral .

However, Mullins was satisfied with Laurina’s performance.

“I was happy enough that Laurina at least ran a race today. Her training schedule has been very hit and miss and this race was an afterthought to see how she would handle going back over hurdles,” said the Closutton handler. 

“She might be better staying over hurdles, but I’ll have to have a chat with connections. 

“Paul (Townend) was very happy with her for a long way today. It’s obviously a long way below her best, but at least she didn’t pull up like her last two runs over fences and we can use her preparation as an excuse.”


Quevega Mares Hurdle (Listed)
€32,500 added, 4yo plus, 2m 4f 50y, Class 1
5 ran
Going: Heavy

1      Elfile 6 11-3 W P Mullins Danny Mullins 6/4
Black Tears 6 10-11 Gordon Elliott Davy Russell 4/1
¾ Laurina 7 11-0 W P Mullins Paul Townend 11/8F
6 Emily Moon 6 11-0 Mrs John Harrington Robbie Power 25/1
47 Surin 5 11-1 Gordon Elliott L P Dempsey 20/1

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