Cheltenham Day One Drama

Annie Power betting ring bloodbath avoided as she falls at final jump

Champion hurdle glory for Faugheen

Champion Hurdle glory for Faugheen and Ruby Walsh

After an interesting day’s racing, the scores stand at Ireland 5-2 United Kingdom, with Irish trainer Willie Mullins having saddled a remarkable four winners in seven races.

Faugheen won the Champion Hurdle under Ruby Walsh, who had earlier teamed up with Mullins to triumphed on Douvan in the Supreme Novice’s Hurdle and Un De Sceaux in the Arkle Trophy.

A betting ring bloodbath was narrowly avoided when odds-on favourite Annie Power, also trained by Mullins and ridden by Walsh, fell at the last when well clear and looking every inch a winner in the Mares’ Hurdle, which Mullins won anyway courtesy of Glens Melody and Paul Townend.

Townend rode another winner in Irish Cavalier for trainer Rebecca Curtis in the Chaps Novice Handicap Chase, while the remaining two races were won by English trainer Neil Mullholland and his Irish counterpart Gordon Elliott. The Druids Nephew won the UBS Handicap Chase for Mulholland under Barry Geraghty, while Cause of Causes and Jamie Codd prevailed in the Toby Balding NH chase for Elliott.

On a more sombre note, we had one fatality: Theatre Queen has been destroyed after being injured in a crashing fall in the penultimate race.

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