Beyond The Law rules for Morris in feature
Mouse Morris is looking forward to stepping Beyond The Law up in class following a dominant display in the feature event on a Clonmel card that had to be abandoned after five races due to poor visibility.
Six runners went to post for the €15,000 Munster Hurdle and the Willie Mullins-trained Draconien was a warm order as the 4/5 favourite, having sauntered to victory on his Irish debut over the course and distance a month ago.
Beyond The Law, which opened his hurdling account with a wide-margin success at Limerick over the festive period, was a 7/1 shot in the hands of Robbie Power and it was clear when he emerged from the gathering gloom early in the home straight that he had the market leader in serious trouble.
Carrying the colours of the late Alan and Ann Potts, the six-year-old came home with 22 lengths in hand and the Grade Three Michael Purcell Memorial Novice Hurdle at Thurles next month is a potential next port of call.
Morris said: "He won easy and is improving and goes on the ground. The tongue tie is a big help and ground could be a factor with him.
"He will probably get an entry in the Michael Purcell Hurdle in Thurles. He's a chaser in the making."
Power was soon on the mark again in the Potts colours as Jessica Harrington's 2/1 favourite Moonshine Bay landed the Monroe Maiden Hurdle.
"He wasn't mad about that ground but his ability got him through," said the Gold Cup-winning jockey.
"It is very heavy ground and the whole way down the hill I was thinking he was going to fall in a hole, but to be fair to him when he levelled out at the bottom of the hill, he picked up well."
Despite Draconien's reverse, the champion trainer did not leave empty-handed, with French recruit Pietralunga lunging late to make a successful Irish debut in the Kilsheelan Mares Maiden Hurdle.
Ridden by David Mullins, the 10/11 favourite looked booked for minor honours between the final two obstacles, but rattled home after the last to get up and beat Moonlight Escape by a short-head.
The winning rider said: "It would have been my fault if we didn't get there because it turned into a sprint, but she showed good guts to stay finding coming up the hill. I felt I would have been a comfortable winner if it was a true-run race."
Gordon Elliott and Davy Russell landed the Lisronagh Handicap Hurdle with heavily-backed 4/5 favourite Graineyhill, while seven-pound claimer Evan Daly rode his first winner over jumps aboard the Gerry Lynch-trained Rock On Barney (8/1) in what turned out to be the concluding race of the day, the Tipperary Handicap Hurdle.
Daly said: "I'm 17 and was with Gerry when I was 11 or 12 and then moved to Ger Lyons. I'm with Joseph O'Brien now and that's just my second ride over hurdles and my first winner."