Cheltenham Festival: Impermeable battles against Allegorie De Vassy in thriller Chase de Mares -Dlight News

Impervious (right) jumps the last before winning the Mares' Chase under Brian Hayes

Mack battled to a well-deserved success in the Mrs Paddy Power Mares chase, as Colm Murphy returned to the Cheltenham winner’s circle.

The seven-year-old owned by JP McManus found herself caught in a race for the line with Willie Mullins’ Allegorie De Vassy.

Under Brian Hayes, it was Impenetrable who put his head forward, triumphing to maintain his unbeaten record over the hurdles.

It was a fifth Festival success for Murphy, but the first since Empire Of Dirt in 2016 for the man who saddled Brave Inca to the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle in 2004 and the Champion Hurdle two years later.

Dan Skelton took the McCoy Contractors County Handicap Hurdle for the fourth time in eight years as Faivoir shot 33-1 and put down Pied Piper in a thrilling finish.

Both horses broke out of the pack after Highway One O Two had made a free turn for home and there were plenty of opportunities coming up on the last few.

Faivoir and Bridget Andrews battle Pied Piper and Davy Russell in the County Hurdle
Faivoir and Bridget Andrews battle Pied Piper and Davy Russell in the County Hurdle

However, Bridget Andrews’s mount, who had stopped in faster ground in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury on her previous outing, continued to respond in these easier conditions and took the verdict in a head-bober.

Pied Piper, who had finished third in the Triumph Hurdle last year, was making his debut handicap mark with a mark of 154 and only missed catching the winner, having given a slight nod landing on last.

Well-supported Filey Bay had every opportunity but could only finish third, while Sharjah held on to fourth, followed by Ballyadam.

66/1 shock as Premier is Magic in Hunters’ Chase

Premier Magic and Bradley Gibbs
Premier Magic and Bradley Gibbs

Prolific point-to-point winner Premier Magic, trained and ridden by Bradley Gibbs, caused a 66-1 clash in the St. James’s Place Festival Challenge Cup Open Hunters’ Chase.

Rocky’s Howya had made much of the run and was still on his back jumping second last when Gibbs made his move.

Although he looked reserved for lesser honours, he was hampered by a loose horse and as Premier Magic began to thin out, Its On The Line (28-1) ran late under Derek O’Connor.

However, the winner had enough reserve to fend off the challenge to win by one and three-quarter lengths, with Shantou Flyer (50-1) finishing third.

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