One-time leading Melbourne Cup hope Wicklow Brave has caused an upset to win the Punchestown Champion Hurdle for trainer Willie Mullins.
The champion trainer now has a slight lead over Gordon Elliott to retain his title with one jumps meeting remaining in Ireland.
Earlier this season Mullins lost 60 horses owned by Gigginstown House, many of which went to Elliott.
Wicklow Brave went off at 12-1, but took over the lead from Identity Thief in the back straight and never looked back under the trainer’s son, Patrick.
My Tent Or Yours and the winner’s stable companion Arctic Fire attempted to close the gap after the final flight, but Wicklow Brave was not for catching and Patrick Mullins punched the air as they passed the post a length and a half to the good.
Wicklow Brave finished among the tail-enders in the 2016 Melbourne Cup as a $16 chance.