Horse Racing

Cheltenham Festival 2024: Brilliant Ballyburn in the Gallagher Novices’ Hurdle

Ballyburn won the first race at Cheltenham on Wednesday, to take trainer Willie Mullins to 98 winners at the Festival and his fourth winner of the week.

Jockey Paul Townend also got his fourth winner of the week, already three ahead of his fellow jockeys.

Stablemate Mercurey led the field from the font, with Ballyburn sitting behind the leader followed by the two British hopes of Handstands and Jingko Blue

Despite a low-head carriage, Ballyburn jumped his hurdles with plenty of confidence as Mercurey set an even gallop.

After the second-last Ballyburn began to turn to overtake the leader and extended away to win by over ten lengths.

Jimmy Du Seuil finished second at 66/1, ahead of second-favourite Ile Atlantique. Mullins ended up withy the first five home, emulating Michael Dickinson’s feat in the 1983 Gold Cup.

Quotes to follow.

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