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Dublin: 14 °C Tuesday 15 October, 2019

Poll: Who do you think will win today’s Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham?

Champion Buveur D’Air is expected to be challenged strongly by Apples Jade and Laurina.

Barry Geraghty celebrates after Buveur D'Air triumphed last year.
Barry Geraghty celebrates after Buveur D'Air triumphed last year.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

THE 2019 CHELTENHAM festival begins this afternoon and all eyes will be on the main race of the opening day when the Champion Hurdle takes place.

The reigning champion is Buveur DAir with the JP McManus-owned horse bidding for a third successive triumph after ruling this race in 2017 and 2018. The last horse to achieve that three-in-a-row feat was the great Istabraq, another famous McManus runner, between 1998 and 2000.

Buveur DAir has ran three times since last March’s victory with wins at Newcastle and Sandown sandwiching a surprise reversal at Kempton at Christmas.

As a result this race is eagerly-awaited with two big challenges expected from Gordon Elliott’s Apple’s Jade, entering this contest after four impressive victories in this campaign, and Willie Mullins hope Laurina, with two wins to date in 2019.

Sharjah and Melon, second in this race last year, are another pair of Mullins entries but it looks to be one that will be decided by the leading trio.

Who do you too will claim glory in the feature on Day One?

Let us know.

Poll Results:

Apples Jade (742)
Laurina (486)
Buveur DAir (420)
Other (172)
Sharjah (101)
Melon (68)

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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