Defi Du Seuil lives up to favourite tag by running clear in Triumph Hurdle

The jockey, Richard Johnson, rode a perfect race to win the first contest of the final day

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Defi Du Seuil has won the opening race of the final day of the Cheltenham Festival, powering to a clear victory in the JCB Triumph Hurdle. 

Richard Johnson rode a perfect race, piloting the pre-race favourite to the win ahead of Mega Fortune and Bapaume, ridden by Thursday's big winner Ruby Walsh.

After a delayed start, the result of Ex Patriot unseating jockey Rachael Blackmore and running off, Mega Fortune led the race for almost its entirety.

However, with two fences left to jump, Defi Du Seuil and Richard Johnson made their move, gliding fairly effortlessly through the field to take a lead that they never looked like giving up, finishing the race a good distance ahead of the rest of the field.

Ex Patriot recovered from whatever spooked him at the start of the race to finish in fourth place, a great result for 27-year-old trainer Ellmarie Holden.

Attention now turns to the Randox Health County Handicap Hurdle at 2:10pm, with Ivanovich Gorbatov the favourite.