ANDY Dufresne got back on the winning trail with a hard-fought success in the Grade 2 Sky Bet Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle at Punchestown.
Leading owner JP McManus went to £330,000 to secure the six-year-old after he impressed in his sole point-to-point, and he lived up to his tall reputation with hugely impressive displays on his first two starts under Rules for Gordon Elliott at Down Royal and Navan.
Redemption for Andy!— Racing TV (@RacingTV) January 12, 2020
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?? Three wins
?? Grade Two scorer
Andy Dufresne regains the winning thread for @gelliott_racing, Mark Walsh & JP Mcmanus with a battling success in the G2 Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle @punchestownrace
Results ? https://t.co/BnGTfBq5GU pic.twitter.com/Gs7T2KCLo8
He lost his aura of invincibility when suffering a shock defeat in last month’s Navan Novice Hurdle – having to make do with the runner-up spot behind Paul Nolan’s Latest Exhibition – but was an 8/15 favourite to bounce back in this two-mile feature.
Henry de Bromhead’s Captain Guinness was his nearest market rival and went to the front with a circuit to run, with Andy Dufresne tracking him in the hands of Mark Walsh.
The pair had it between them rounding the home turn, and while there was little to choose between them jumping the final flight, Andy Dufresne had just enough in the tank and won the battle by three-quarters of a length.
Anything Will Do was 15 lengths back in third.