Third time lucky for plucky Barizan
Perennial bridesmaid Barizan enjoyed his day in the sun as he gained a deserved Grade One triumph in the Airshow 100 Champion Four Year Old Hurdle at Punchestown.
Evan Williams' youngster went mighty close to springing a surprise in Cheltenham's Triumph Hurdle after setting a scorching gallop, only getting caught late in the day up the punishing hill.
He was second again in the Matalan Anniversary 4-Y-O Novices' Hurdle at Aintree but lining up at his third Festival in little over a month, he came good at the third time of asking with a glorious display. Sent off at 4/1 in the hands of in-form Jason Maguire, he blazed a trail that was 12 lengths too good for favourite Carlito Brigante.
Willie Mullins and Paul Townend continued their sensational week as French import Tarla landed the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders Association Fillies Scheme EBF Mares Hurdle.
The quicker ground saw Paul Nolan's 2006 Galway Hurdle winner Cuan Na Grai bounce right back to form with an impressive performance in the Eventus Marquees Novice Chase.