Willie goes wild but Sizing John steals the show at Cheltenham

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Four incredible days, one Cheltenham Festival. And what a way to end the latest edition of the Greatest Show on Turf. 

For all the punting strife endured throughout the first two days, the second-half of this year’s meeting provided some much-needed cheer.

Defi Du Seuil emptied the bookies’ satchels when landing the Triumph Hurdle, a much-welcome and well-deserved victory for Philip Hobbs and champion jockey Richard Johnson.

His trainer is already making future plans.

Arctic Fire then gave Willie Mullins win number five courtesy of a majestic ride from Paul Townend in the County Hurdle.

The 20/1 shot swooped late to beat L’Ami Serge by a nose.

And it was about to get even better for the Mullins-Townend partnership. Penhill upset the odds to land the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle with hot favourite Death Duty falling at the last when well back in the field.

However, the Closutton handler is still waiting for the biggest prize of them all.

Despite travelling well throughout, 3/1 favourite Djakadam couldn’t see out the Gold Cup slog in the hands of Ruby Walsh.

Instead, Irish Gold Cup winner Sizing John came powering through for debutant trainer, Jessica Harrington.

Minella Rocco ran a stormer in second with Colin Tizzard’s Native River finishing back in third.

Even John’s ‘friends’ were quick to congratulate him…

Let’s watch the moment of victory again…

Meanwhile, Pacha Du Polder and Wonderful Charm delivered a 1-2 for trainer Paul Nicholls in the Foxhunter Chase.

As you’d expect, both trainer and jockey were delighted with the result.

And just when we thought the excitement was coming to and end, up pops another Gordon Elliott winner in Champagne Classic.

His Martin Pipe success took him level with Mullins on six winners for the week.

And so we come to the grand finale. Or the Grand Annual Chase to be more precise.

Jessie Harrington and Robbie Power put the seal on a fine week with Rock the World the 28th winner of a breathtaking meeting.

Just in case you were interested, it finished Ireland 19-9 Great Britain!

Thanks for joining us. See you next year!

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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