A few big surprises at record breaking festival

30,035 attended the final day of the 2016 Punchestown Festival as racegoers came in their droves bringing the total attendance for the week to up to 114,438 that's a remarkable increase of 14,709 on last

Willie Mullins was expected to land the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Mares Champion Hurdle at Punchestown, but not with his eventual winner Whiteout.

Mullins was responsible for 11-10 favourite Limini as well as 16-1 chance Whiteout, who jumped with real fluency at the head of affairs.

Skipping clear approaching the last under Paul Townend, Whiteout only had Limini as a danger at that point, but she kept on strongly to score by four and three-quarter lengths.

Apple's Jade confirmed her superiority in the juvenile hurdling division to land the AES Champion Four Year Old Hurdle and give Mullins a Grade One double on the day.

Always in front under Bryan Cooper, the 8-13 favourite saw off Ivanovich Gorbatov with some ease and breezed to a nine-length win, with fellow Mullins runner Let's Dance just getting up for second.

Mullins bagged a treble, and Townend a double, when Pleasant Company landed the Palmerstown House Pat Taaffe Handicap Chase.

There were plenty in with a chance at the second last, but it Willie Mullins' 4-1 favourite that found most, beating Regal Encore by three-quarters of a length.

JP McManus had nine runners in the Coral Handicap Hurdle and Barry Geraghty chose the right one asAnibale Fly (6-1) finished with a flourish to score for trainer Tony Martin.

Fletchers Flyer (13-2) showed stamina is his strongest suit when coming out on top in the marathon Madra Irish Dog Foods Handicap Chase.

Harry Fry's British raider was always to the fore under Noel Fehily, and though 5-1 favourite Forever Gold harried him all the way up the straight,p>Fletchers Flyer kept pulling out more to score by two and a half lengths.

The CME Auctioneers Cross Country Chase was a virtual match from the outset, with La Touche Cup winner Quantitativeeasing unable to fend off Peter Maher's Mtada Supreme (5-1) under Benny Walsh.

Stretchingthetruth (13-8 favourite) took the K Club Hotel, Spa And Ryder Cup Venue Flat Race for Noel Meade and Nina Carberry.


Vroum Vroum Mag proved that she has the speed for two miles at the very highest level by beating the boys in the Betdaq Punchestown Champion Hurdle on Friday.

The money came for Willie Mullins' brilliant mare and she was backed down to 4-6 favouritism, andRuby Walsh sent her to the front with a circuit to travel.

Identity Thief didn't let her have everything her own way and was the only serious challenger once My Tent Or Yours began to flounder at the top of the straight, but Vroum Vroum Mag wasn't for catching and triumphed by a length and a quarter.

Her stablemate Avant Tout defied top weight to stamp his authority on the EMS Copiers Novice Handicap Chase.

Paul Townend was patient on the 11-2 chance and while he was awkward over the last two, there was plenty left in the locker and he sprinted two and three-quarter lengths clear of Mr Diablo.

Townend followed up when the Mullins-trainedKoshari (7-4), in the same Rich Ricci colours carried by Vroum Vroum Mag, got the better of stablemateBello Conti in the Star Best For Racing Coverage Novice Hurdle.


Jer's Girl capitalised on her age and sex allowance to register her second success at the top table in the Tattersalls Ireland Champion Novice Hurdle.

The 11-8 favourite careered away under Barry Geraghty, crossing the line 10 lengths ahead of O O Seven.

Definite Ruby (8-1) gave Gordon Elliott his fourth winner of the week, and Jack Kennedy his second, when repelling the late thrusts of Padraig's Joy and Creswell Breeze in the Hanlon Concrete EBF Glencarraig Lady Mares Handicap Chase.

Shin A Vee (2-1 favourite) won the KFM Hunters Chase for the third time, while Jamie Codd gotPhilip Hobbs' raider No Comment (7-2) up in the Racing FX Flat Race.

The roof was raised after the Racing Post Champion Hunters Chase as 4-5 favourite On The Fringecompleted the Cheltenham-Aintree-Punchestown treble for the second year running, and his fifth victory in this race.


Warren Greatrex has another star stayer on his hands after One Track Mind landed Thursday's Ladbrokes Champion Stayers Hurdle at Punchestown.

Greatrex, successful in last year's World Hurdle with Cole Harden, resisted the temptation to send his lightly-raced six-year-old to Cheltenham and Aintree and he was always prominent here.

The 10-1 shot fought off the gallant Jennies Jewel and scored by two and a quarter lengths, but the result might have been very different had Shaneshill not crashed out when making his challenge at the last.

Douvan barely had to come off the bridle to continue his domination of the novice chasing division.

Unbeaten in nine starts since joining Willie Mullins, with victories at the Cheltenham and Aintree Festivals under his belt, the 2-9 favourite dictated terms to suit himself in the Ryanair Novice Chase and strode clear to land his fifth Grade One on the spin, beating The Game Changer by 11 lengths.

Bright New Dawn stamped his class on proceedings in the Three.ie Handicap Chase.

A dual Grade Two winner in his pomp, the 12-1 chance cruised through the race as market leader Rock The World cut out the running and, challenging at the last, he found slightly more to register a one-length triumph.