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Mullins & Townend double-up with Katou

Katou (far side) jumps the last alongside The Folkes TiaraKatou (far side) jumps the last alongside The Folkes Tiara
© Photo Healy Racing

Katou completed a double for Willie Mullins and Paul Townend, as she claimed the Visit West Waterford Maiden Hurdle on her debut over flights.

Owned and bred by Terry Conroy, the Shantou six-year-old was third on her only previous start in a bumper at Thurles in December.

Sent off a 7/4 chance this evening, she was always toward the head of affairs, racing mostly on the outer and making a mistake at the second.

In a share of the lead with The Folkes Tiara on the approach to two out, where she was again not fluent, she gained the upper hand on the run-in, going on to score by three-and-three-parts of a length.

Returned the 11/8 favourite, The Folkes Tiara had to settle for second under Darragh O'Keeffe for Henry de Bromhead, while Rule The Wind (4/1), also trained by Mullins, was another 16-lengths away in third.

"I won't say she behaved herself, she was very keen," Townend commented.

"She jumped very well but missed the second last and done well to pull out more again after being as hard on herself as she was.

"She doesn't have much racing under her belt so if we can channel her energy the right way, she might be fun going forward.

"Bar the second and the second last, she jumped well on the whole. I'd imagine she'll be kept going for the summer, she bounced off the ground."

Mullins and Townend were earlier successful in the opener with Heia

About Donal Murphy
Donal graduated from Maynooth University in 2010 with a BBS in Equine Business and since attained a diploma in Sports Journalism from Dublin Business School. He holds a variety of roles in the horse racing industry, reporting for the Press Association and p2p.ie, while also working for SIS and the Tote. From Wexford, he is a keen runner and has completed over 100 parkruns at various locations around the country.