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Its On The Line pounces late to complete Aintree Punchestown double

Image © Healy Racing

Its On The Line cemented his position as the top hunter chaser in Ireland when he again pounced late to land the Event Power Champion Hunter Chase for Emmet Mullins and JP McManus.
 
The wide-margin Cork victor Lifetime Ambition had been sent on by Susie Doyle off the home bend, and the pair edged three lengths clear of the field after the penultimate fence.
 
However, Derek O’Connor knows the Aintree Foxhunters hero particularly well, and once asking for maximum effort after the last they wore down their main market rival to strike the front inside the dying strides to ultimately win cosily by a length and three quarters.
 
There was a further six and a half lengths back to Lonesome Boatman who ran the race of his particularly progressive career to take third.
 
“As Derek came back in he said there is not much point in instructions, he is a very unique animal, he doesn’t make life easy, but Derek has the trick to him,” Mullins said.
 
“Early doors it wasn’t great, Derek had to make a move to get off the inside and get him travelling. I was very happy the whole way around to the third-last, but I did start to panic a bit when Lifetime Ambition went on. 
 
“Once we got over the second last I was always confident we would get him back.
 
“He is very well named, that is not his first occasion to do that, he is just a horse that you have to hold his hand to bring him along but he just has a big engine.”
 
“He is an amazing horse, because he is only ever doing enough to stay alive, but every time you ask him, he brings more for you,” O’Connor said.
 
“To be fair I never really got serious with him until I jumped the last because I wanted the company. Susie Doyle rode a brilliant race, she is unlucky in defeat.
 
“This fella is just hard to beat, he keeps finding for you.”

 

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