PAUL Townend felt the power surging through him as he loomed outside a frantically animated Sam Ewing and Conflated, and determined that the time was right to loosen just the tiniest bit of rein. It was more than enough.

In the blink of an eye, the Savills Chase was over. In the process, Galopin Des Champs put to bed any doubts about his enduring ability following two Punchestown defeats, the third-place finish in the John Durkan Chase won by Punchestown Gold Cup victor, Fastorslow having caused most concern on seasonal debut in October due to a number of jumping errors.