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Dublin: 5 °C Monday 24 February, 2020

Djakadam finally lands first Grade 1 at Punchestown

Willie Mullins’ horse had a number of high-profile second place finishes last year.

Djakadam on his way to a first Grade 1 victory today.
Djakadam on his way to a first Grade 1 victory today.
Image: Niall Carson/PA Wire/Press Association Images

NO LONGER THE bridesmaid, Djakadam came out of top in Grade 1 company for the very first time when picking up the John Durkan Memorial Chase at Punchestown this afternoon.

The Willie Mullins trained six-year old was sent of as 7/4 market leader and justified his favouritism by making almost all the running under Ruby Walsh.

The Cheltenham and Punchestown Gold Cup runner-up out-jumped and out-galloped all his rivals with only stablemate Valseur Lido offering any sort of challenge.

However, as Bryan Cooper’s mount’s chances faded before the second last, Walsh rode Djakadam 12 lengths clear to take the win.

Bookmakers were obviously impressed with the run, cutting Djakadam to as low as 6/1 for the Cheltenham Gold Cup in March. He had been as high as 10/1 before today.

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Steve O'Rourke

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