Arvika demolishes Drinmore rivals
Arvika Ligeonniere made all to win the Bar One Racing Drinmore Chase in impressive style at Fairyhouse.
The Willie Mullins-trained seven-year-old (2-1) soon opened up a huge advantage over the field in the Grade One event, jumping with lots of dash in the hands of Ruby Walsh.
The pack briefly threatened to close, but Walsh could afford to look round twice between the final two fences and as even-money favourite Dedigout started to toil, Arvika Ligeonniere safely negotiated the last to make it two wins from as many starts over fences, finishing 11 lengths clear.
Walsh said: "He was a bit keen and took me on, he went some gallop - he was just relentless and I'd have no worries going back in trip with him. He's got plenty of pace and attacks his fences.
"He's a great jumper and is a horse that has always had a big engine. He's just been difficult to train, but the lads have done a great job with him."
Mullins added: "He was very impressive. He did it very well, his jumping was fantastic. He has a tremendous cruising speed and we wouldn't be afraid to go back to two miles - that's maybe his job.
"He was very fast over the first four fences. There were a few front-runners in it and they were all trying to make it.
"He has the jumping ability, along with the pace. Until we see that he's not able to do it over two miles we'll go that way first.
"He had a year off. He just had a little problem. With horses like him you just have to give them a bit of time. We'll keep him running as much as we can and get all the experience we can with him. We'll look at Christmas now (at Leopardstown)."
Stan James were impressed and cut Mullins' charge to 8-1 from 16s for the Arkle at Cheltenham in March, while Paddy Power went 7-1 from 16-1.