Minella Indo bids to confirm Festival superiority

Shock Cheltenham winner faces old rivals at Punchestown

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Minella Indo is one of 13 runners in the Irish Daily Mirror Novice Hurdle at Punchestown.

Henry de Bromhead’s charge was a shock 50-1 winner of the Albert Bartlett at the Cheltenham Festival and bids to confirm his superiority over Gordon Elliott’s runner-up Commander Of Fleet and the third home Allaho, trained by Willie Mullins.

Elliott also saddles Defi Bleu, while Allaho spearheads a four-strong Mullins team which also includes Carefully Selected, Castlebawn West and the only mare in the field, Salsaretta.

John McConnell’s recent Perth victor Go Another One features too.

Grade One honours are also up for grabs in the Racing Post App Champion INH. Flat Race.

Mullins has saddled eight previous winners of this event – including six of the last eight – and this year fires a three-pronged assault.

Stable companions Golden Spread and Mt Leinster renew rivalry just nine days after finishing first and second respectively at Fairyhouse, while the mare Colreevy completes the Closutton trio.

Elliott’s Abacadabras just about sets the standard after finishing fourth behind his stablemate Envoi Allen in the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham.

Two British raiders, in Phil Kirby’s December Second and Paul Webber’s House Island, are also part of a 10-strong field.

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