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Champion Hurdle glory for Honeysuckle and history-maker Blackmore

Honeysuckle is the 2021 Cheltenham Champion Hurdle winner, as Rachael Blackmore completed the gre...



Champion Hurdle glory for Hone...
Racing

Champion Hurdle glory for Honeysuckle and history-maker Blackmore

Honeysuckle is the 2021 Cheltenham Champion Hurdle winner, as Rachael Blackmore completed the greatest victory of her career.

The 11/10 favourite made it 11 wins in a row on the Henry de Bromhead-trained 7-year-old, with Blackmore becoming the first female jockey to win the Champion Hurdle - or any championship race at the Cheltenham Festival.

Pulling alongside pace-setter Aspire Tower after the second-last, the mare sprinted up the hill to jump the final hurdle several lengths clear, before coasting across the finish line, six-and-a-half-lengths clear of second place.

Last year's winner Epatante never looked like challenging once Honeysuckle made her move, with the Aidan Coleman mount finishing third for Nicky Henderson at odds of 4/1, behind the Willie Mullins-trained Sharjah, who was runner-up for the second year in a row.

Speaking after the race on ITV's coverage, Blackmore said she was lost for words.

"She did everything I wanted her to do. I really can’t believe we’ve won a Champion Hurdle, this is such a special race.

"It’s all about her, she’s unbeaten and she’s getting better. It’s just phenomenal."

READ: John Duggan's Day 1 Cheltenham Tips

READ: Thom Malone's Tuesday Trifecta at Cheltenham

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Cheltenham 2021 Cheltenham Champion Hurdle Henry De Bromhead Honeysuckle Rachael Blackmore