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Our Conor, Leopardstown 09.02.2013

Bryan Cooper and Our Conor win the Spring Juvenile Hurdle

  PICTURE: Patrick McCann (  

Our Conor on top in Spring Juvenile Hurdle

Report: Leopardstown, Saturday

Spring Juvenile Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m, 4yo

OUR CONOR propelled himself to the upper echelons of the JCB Triumph Hurdle market after accounting for the Willie Mullins-trained favourite Diakali in comfortable fashion.

Ridden with supreme confidence throughout by Bryan Cooper, the 100-30 winner swung for home with plenty in the tank before stretching well clear of a quality field.

With this Grade 1 responsible for last season's Triumph Hurdle one-two (Countrywide Flame and Hisaabaat), bookmakers acted swiftly to cut Our Conor to a general 7-1 second favourite (from 16) for the festival, where trainer Dessie Hughes said he would next race.

"He's the real deal now," said Hughes. "He met a lot of the hurdles wrong today but was still quick at them. He's definitely stronger than when he won at Fairyhouse."

Our Conor missed a Grade 2 hurdle at this track over Christmas - which was won by Blood Cotil, the second Mullins runner unable to land a blow today - but on this showing he appears to be back to his best as he extended his unbeaten record to three.

Only Cheltenham trial winner Rolling Star is a shorter price in the Triumph betting.

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