Sunday 18 February 2018

Douvan's winning streak continues

Douvan and Ruby Walsh. Photo: Patrick McCann
Douvan and Ruby Walsh. Photo: Patrick McCann Sportsdesk

Douvan dazzled on his return to action in the Kerry Group Hilly Way Chase at Cork but seems set to miss the King George VI Chase at Kempton and instead stay at two miles this season.

Last season's Arkle Trophy hero got his campaign off to a flying start by completely outclassing the opposition, to stretch his unbeaten run over fences to seven.

Understandably fresh after a break of 227 days, Willie Mullins' superstar was sent straight to the front from flag-fall by Paul Townend and jumped well in the main, with just the odd minor error, most notably at the third-last.

Townend turned the screw on the 1/6 shot from four out and the result was never in doubt as Douvan cruised 22 lengths clear of Days Hotel.

Mozoltov fell three from home and brought down Gilgamboa, while The Game Changer was pulled up.

Townend said: "He was awesome. He was a bit gassy early, but it was his first run of the year. He was in front a long time and it (mistake at the third-last) probably opened his eyes."

Irish Independent

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