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  • 16:20 Aon Novice Handicap Chase 2m 5f

  • (Grade A) €100,000 added 5yo+ 14 ran
  • Winner €60,000 2nd €19,000 3rd €9,000 4th €3,000
  • Going: Good to Yielding
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 5m 28.40s
  • Off time: 16:21:17

Operating holds on for Buckley

Last Updated: 02/05/14 5:14pm

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Operating and Robbie Power land the spoils at Punchestown.

Operating and Robbie Power land the spoils at Punchestown.

The Jessica Harrington-trained Operating (12/1) landed the Aon Novice Handicap Chase under Robbie Power, providing owner Michael Buckley with another winner at the Punchestown festival, following Beat That’s success on Wednesday.

Road To Riches made a bold bid to make all under claimer Ger Fox but was joined by Operating, who had raced in second place throughout, as they turned for home.

Operating looked like he was going to assert as they cleared the last but had to hold off a final rally from Road to Riches who was eating into his lead. However Power's mount held on by three-quarters of a length.

The Romford Pele finished a further six lengths back in third and Followmeuptocarlow a further place back in fourth, but favourite Sizing Gold proved most disappointing.

Winning owner, Michael Buckley, told At The Races: “He was terrific the last time. I have to say Jessie (Harrington) has had this race as the target for him all season.”

“He got his ground today and it is a great win.”

Harrington added: "This has been the plan all year, he's been disappointing on heavy ground.

"It was much better at Cork last time when he won and that gave him confidence, he's jumped great and he stayed galloping.

"I suppose he might end up a Galway Plate horse - I'll have to treat him like a good-ground horse.

"I thought he had a good chance off his weight."

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