Honeysuckle claims 14th win with victory in Chanelle Pharma Irish Champion Hurdle

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The star billing on Day 2 of the Dublin Racing Festival, Honeysuckle (1/5f) and Rachael Blackmore, delivered the 2 mile Chanelle Pharma Irish Champion Hurdle to the delight of the packed stands at Leopardstown.

The Henry de Bromhead-trained super mare is now 14 wins from 14 runs and equals Bula’s longstanding record, after her win in the €200,00 Grade 1 over 2 miles.

Nestled in third throughout by Rachael Blackmore, the eight-year-old jumped into the lead at the second last flight of hurdles. To the cheers of the crowd in the stands, the mare extended her lead before the final flight, defeating her main market rival Zanahiyr (6/1) by six and a half lengths, with 25/1 Echoes In Rain a further half a length back in third.

Grade 1 treble for Townend and Mullins

The Grade 1 Ladbrokes Novice Steeplechase of €150,000 was the first of a Grade 1 treble for Paul Townend and Willie Mullins.

Galopin Des Champs (4/9f), highly impressive in a beginners chase at Leopardstown’s Christmas Festival, was a comfortable winner of the 2 mile 5 furlongs contest to claim the €88,500 first prize.

Half an hour later, the Closutton team was back in the winners’ enclosure as 4/7f Chacun Pour Soi came back to form to take the Grade 1 Ladbrokes Dublin Steeplechase, worth €150,000, over 2 miles 1 furlong. It was a third win in succession in the race for the French-bred ten-year-old.

Tattersalls Ireland Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) of €150,000 run over 2 miles was the final part of a Day 2 treble for jockey Paul Townend and trainer Willie Mullins.

The Cheveley Park Stud-owned son of Jeremy, Sir Gerhard (8/13f), had enough in hand coming to the last, which neither he nor the runner-up Three Stripe Life (5/1) jumped very well. He ran out a six-length winner with the same distance further back to Colonel Mustard (14/1) back in third.

Gordon Elliott scored a 1-2 in the opening Irish Stallion Farms EBF Paddy Mullins Mares Handicap Hurdle. Davy Russell steered the 7/4 favourite Party Central to victory in the colours of Bective Stud, while the Robcour-owned Say Goodbye (33/1) stayed on for second under jockey Robbie Power, one and a quarter lengths behind the winner.

The Bulmers Secret Orchard Leopardstown Handicap Steeplechase of €125,000 over 2 miles 5 furlongs went to the bottom weight Birchdale (9/2) for Enda Bolger and rider Mark McDonagh.

The winner of the 2 mile Liffey Handicap Hurdle (€125,000) was won by Call Me Lyreen (20/1) while Lily Du Berlais (40/1) was the final winner of the 2022 Dublin Racing Festival as she claimed the highly competitive €100,000 Coolmore N.H. Sires Santiago Irish EBF Mares I.N.H. Flat Race (Grade 2) over 2 miles.

 

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