Rubi lights up Punchestown

Rubi Light ran his rivals ragged to be an impressive winner of the John Durkan Memorial Chase at Punchestown.

Rubi Light ran his rivals ragged to be an impressive winner of the John Durkan Memorial Chase at Punchestown.

Leading six fences from home, the Robbie Hennessy-trained six-year-old, ridden by Andrew Lynch, built up a handy lead and went on to score by five lengths.

Joncol stayed on well to take second place without threatening the winner. Cooldine was a remote third.

The first and second were 5-2 joint-favourites.

Cooldine and Roi Du Mee cut out much of a steady early gallop with the rest of the field tightly-packed apart from Kempes. He was always in arrears after making a mistake at the first fence before falling at the fifth-last.

When Lynch made his decisive move on Rubi Light, the others were left in his wake.

The pace proved too much for last year’s winner Tranquil Sea, who was pulled up before the final fence where Roi Du Mee came down when well beaten.

A bad jump at halfway did Joncol’s chances no good, though his stamina saw him secure the runner-up spot in the testing conditions.

Victor Chandler cut Rubi Light from 16-1 to 12-1 for Cheltenham’s Ryanair Chase while Joncol was left unchanged at 33-1 for the Gold Cup.

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