Peter Fahey’s stable star Peregrine Run claimed victory after a dramatic climax to the MSL Cork Mercedes-Benz Handicap Chase at Killarney.
With a total prize fund of 50,000 euro up for grabs, the two-and-a-half-mile contest was the feature event on the final afternoon of the four-day Festival and a field of 13 runners went to post.
Last year’s winner Kilcarry Bridge led for a long way before being claimed by both 6-1 shot Peregrine Run – sporting blinkers for the first time – and the strong-travelling The West’s Awake on the run to the final fence.
There was little to choose between the pair when The West’s Awake suffered a crashing fall, leaving Peregrine Run in the clear and Roger Loughran’s mount galloped on to secure a lucrative success by five and a half lengths.
Kilcarry Bridge this year filled the runner-up spot ahead of Product Of Love in third.
Fahey said: “I’m absolutely thrilled to get him back winning. He very seldom runs a bad race, but things went wrong when we brought him to Ayr and the ground went against him in Galway.
“I think the blinkers worked today and sharpened him up and his jumping was very quick.
“He has had a light campaign and there are lots of options for him – he’ll go to the Kerry National if the ground is quick enough but there’s also a little hurdle race for him at Down Royal next week.
“We’ll see where are with him, but he’ll be kept busy away as when the ground turns soft we know we are at nothing with him.”