Rebel can only take second on Killarney debut
Smart hurdler Rebel Fitz could only finish second on his novice chasing debut at Killarney.
A winner of the Galway Hurdle as well as two other good prizes last summer, Michael Winters' stable star was pitched into the Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Beginners Chase after he was well beaten by Hurricane Fly at Punchestown.
Sent off the 4-7 favourite under Barry Geraghty, Rebel Fitz did not do much wrong around the tight County Kerry circuit but could never get on terms with Arnaud (8-1), who made all the running and won by five and a half lengths.
Arnaud had finished third on his chasing bow at Cork last month and trainer Charles Byrnes was pleased to get off the mark.
"I fancied him at Cork, but the ground was worse than it was here. His jumping is brilliant," he said.
"I thought he would have achieved a lot more than he has. He was a second season hurdler and impossible to place. He ended up being badly handicapped.
"We'll stay chasing and keep him going over the summer as he goes on fast ground."