Defi delivers in style in Triumph Trial at Cheltenham
Defi Du Seuil staked an early claim for Festival honours with an impressive performance to take the JCB Triumph Trial Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham.
The Philip Hobbs-trained three-year-old followed up his debut success over jumps at Ffos Los in some style under Barry Geraghty.
East Indies and Red Hot Chilly made most of the running to three out, where Defi Du Seuil and Dino Velvet cruised up to take closer order. The latter came down at the final flight when holding every chance and that left Defi Du Seuil to win snugly by a length and three-quarters from Diable De Sivola.
Lambeau Field was 58 lengths away in third place.
Hobbs said: "He's a lovely horse at home and everything he does is really nice. It's a big relief to see him come here and do that today.
"He did it very well at Ffos Las. It was a very minor race there, but we were hoping he'd do that today. He's a very nice prospect for the future.
"He's done everything well. He always jumps well and has a really good attitude and softer ground will be no problem to him, he's very pleased. Barry was very pleased.
"I imagine he'll run somewhere before the Festival, but I'm not sure where he might go."
Jane Williams, wife and assistant to Nick Williams, the trainer of runner-up Diable De Sivola, said: "It was a brilliant run. I just wish the race had been a bit further. I was very happy with him.
"The McManus horse had a bit more in the tank and we just needed a bit further.
"He's only a three-year-old and we don't want to push him too much. He has a long career ahead of him."
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Source: At The Races