El Fabiolo proved too sturdy for former rival Jonbon to win a fifth Sporting Life Arkle Novices’ Chase in 9 years for coach Willie Mullins.
Solely a neck separated the pair in an epic freshman duel at Aintree final April and the rematch was extremely anticipated between the main novice hunters from two miles both facet of the Irish Sea.
Jonbon bought the higher of El Fabiolo once they final met, however it was the Mullins star who was the bettors’ alternative, despatched off as 11/10 favourite after selecting up the Irish Arkle final month.
Stablemate Dysart Dynamo set the tone in his sometimes enthusiastic type underneath Danny Mullins and joined Jonbon and El Fabiolo in a line of three on the penultimate fence.
Paul Townend, who had been crushed on favourite Straightforward Vega within the Supreme half an hour earlier, continued as Jonbon struggled to renew, with Dysart Dynamo struggling a heavy fall on the finish.
El Fabiolo finally missed out on a winner by 5 and a half lengths, with Mullins additionally taking third by way of Saint Roi.
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