John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Chase
|Grade 1, Punchestown 13:40
2m 4f 40y, Class 1
|Sunday 6th December 2020|
1 Min 13/8F
2 Tornado Flyer 12/1
3 Melon 22/1
7 ran NR: Samcro
Distances: 1l, 6½l, 15l Time: 5m 23.80s
With Paul Towned partnering Chacun Pour Soi to victory in the Hilly Way Chase at Cork, Patrick Mullins came in for the choice spare on Min, who gave owners Rich and Susannah Ricci a fantastic half-hour by making it three straight wins in the extended two and a half mile contest.
The race was run in thick fog, which had put the meeting in some doubt earlier in the day, and visibility was poor, but Min was right in front rank from the outset and having seen off the attentions of Chris's Dream when the field came back into view, he seemingly only had his stablemates to beat.
The Bryan Cooper-ridden Tornado Flyer was the one who laid down most of a challenge and fought all the way from the last fence, but Min showed all his class and held on well to score by a length, with Melon ultimately finishing third under Brian Hayes.
It was a seventh victory at the highest level for Min, who signed off last season with a first Cheltenham Festival success in the Ryanair Chase, where he beat Saint Calvados by a neck.
John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Steeplechase
€85,000 added, 5yo plus, 2m 4f 40y, Class 1
1 Min 9 11-12 W P Mullins Mr P W Mullins 11/8F
2 1 Tornado Flyer 7 11-12 W P Mullins B J Cooper 12/1
3 6½ Melon 8 11-12 W P Mullins Brian Hayes 22/1
4 15 Battleoverdoyen 7 11-12 Gordon Elliott Rachael Blackmore 9/2
5 hd Chris's Dream 8 11-12 Henry De Bromhead Robbie Power 11/2
6 11 Allaho 6 11-12 W P Mullins David Mullins 11/4
PU Le Richebourg 7 11-12 Joseph O'Brien Mark Walsh 33/1
NR 7 Samcro 8 11-12 Gordon Elliott NON RUNNER