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Dublin: 1°C Friday 7 May 2021

Willie Mullins just had the most dominant week in Cheltenham history - and here's the proof

Six Grade 1 winners, over €1 million in prize money, and a new Festival record. Wow.

Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

THE STATS DON’T lie. Willie Mullins cemented his place as the preeminent trainer in Great Britain and Ireland with record-breaking excellence at the Cheltenham Festival.

The Closutton trainer saddled eight winners in the Cotswolds this week, eclipsing Nicky Henderson’s record of seven set in 2012.

Remarkably Mullins landed six of the 13 Grade 1 contests over the four days, with his winners netting £668,890 (€940,915) in prize money — not to mention the countless smaller pots collected by the 50-strong team.

He looked set to make history on Tuesday with a four-timer that would have cost the bookies in the region of €80 million.

But after wins for Douvan, Un de Sceaux and a Champion Hurdle 1-2-3 led home by Faugheen, Annie Power fell at the last when streaking clear in the Mares’ Hurdle.

As Mullins’ second string Glens Melody scooted up the hill in her place, one wag joked: “Even when Willie loses, he still wins.”

Here are the Great Eight that made history this week:

Douvan (Supreme Novices’ Hurdle)

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

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Un de Sceaux (Arkle Chase)

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Faugheen (Champion Hurdle)

Faugheen ridden by Ruby Walsh Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Glens Melody (Mares’ Hurdle)

Paul Townend celebrates on Glens Melody with winning trainer Willie Mullins Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Don Poli (RSA Chase)

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Vautour (JLT Novices’ Chase)

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Wicklow Brave (County Hurdle)

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Killultagh Vic (Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle)

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

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About the author:

Niall Kelly

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