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Cheltenham Festival Gold Cup Day LIVE: Absurde beats favourite L’eau Du Sud to the first Handicap Chase of the day!

Welcome to our coverage of the races on day four of the Cheltenham Festival, stay tuned as we update you with race results and direct quotes from jockeys and trainers as they come in.

The third of day four’s races saw Stellar Story- win the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle, as jockey Sam Ewing claims his first ever Cheltenham festival winner.

At 33-1 it looked like Stellar star had little hope of claiming victory, also due in part to a tremendous effort from The Jukebox Man, ridden by jockey Kielan Woods. 

The Jukebox Man, owned by former Tottenham Hotspur and Queen’s Park Rangers manager Harry Redknapp, set the standard early on and led right until the very end.

Dancing City rounded out the top three, originally tipped at 8-1.

 Owners Michael and Anita O’Leary spoke following the race.

“We were very surprised, makes up for a disappointing day yesterday. This horse was supposed to go to Aintree was so very much the reserve. It was a very strange race, we thought something would come from the back but the front two horses stayed at the front for the whole way round,” Michael said.

“We had no expectations, so for us to come over the line first was a huge surprise,” Anita said.

Absurde wins the first Handicap Hurdle of the day taking over favourite L’eau Du Sud just before the line.

Harry Skelton looked to certain to have taken him to the win until Paul Townend had other ideas riding Absurd to victory meaning Willie Mullins is two out of two for the day.

Speaking on his victory, Paul Townend said: “I got a lot of satisfaction out of that, I’ll tell you the truth. What a horse.

“He’s travelled the world, come back and put in a performance like that on this ground. The ground was a big worry.”

Pressures of being 12/1: “I wont repeat what the lads were saying in the waiting room before, but that was it. I wanted to go out and take a chance, it’s nice to be able to do that from time to time.”

Andrew Heffernan (owner): Member of HOS syndicate – “Everyone else is at home, I’d say they’re delighted. It was some run from Absurde.”

“It’s the best horse in the world! Just delighted with how it’s gone.”

We got off to a flyer with the Grade One Triumph Hurdle as heavily tipped Majborough stormed his way to victory in a race to the line finish with 4/1 Kargese.

Majborough was in the mix for the whole race staying in around fifth position before boosting his way to the front after the second to last hurdle.

Winning jockey Mark Walsh, speaking to ITV Sport said: “He’s not your typical juvenile hurdler – he’s a big chaser, so strong.

“He was a good enough calibre, he was happy sitting and leaving as long as he could.

“Kargese was something to aim at, I was delighted.”

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