Rachael Blackmore and Honeysuckle were once again triumphant at the Cheltenham Champion Hurdle on day one of the festival, this time infront of a packed crowd.
The duo achieved the same feat last year although due to Coronavirus restrictions the meet took place behind closed doors.
It’s the 15th race the Henry de Bromhead trained horse and the Tipperary woman have won together and were challenged today by horses such as Appreciate It, Not So Sleepy, Epatante and Zanahiyr, but made their move at the second last hurdle to sail over the line first.
THE HISTORY MAKERS!
Win a second Champion Hurdle!#CheltenhamFestival pic.twitter.com/C0WPpQmlbP
— Virgin Media Sport (@VMSportIE) March 15, 2022
Speaking after the race Blackmore told ITV racing that the “incredible” race was made even better by having people in attendance.
“Walking out there in front of the stand with all the people, it’s just such a special place,” she said.
“I’m so lucky to be riding winners here and on this mare. It’s class to have Kenny [Alexander, owner] here as well, he missed it last year.
She also commented on her relationship with the now notorious Honeysuckle, showcasing their ability to work together in tandem.
“She kind of decides in a race when she’s happy to go on, I haven’t stopped her from doing that yet. She’s just an incredible mare,” she said.
“The work that goes into her at home is unbelievable as well, Henry’s got a great team of staff and they deserve all the credit for this as well.”
De Bromhead too had his say adding that the feeling was one of “ecstasy.”
“It’s a never-ending fairytale, I’m always trying to prepare myself for it to end and she just keeps winning. Rachael is amazing,” he said.
“It’s brilliant and no more than she deserves. If goodwill and and all the good lucks won you a race, she would have won by a furlong.
I put myself under pressure and you want to be competing at these places so to do it again is just incredible.”
Class from Honeysuckle and Rachael Blackmore and magic to do it in front of a bumper crowd #Cheltenham2022
— Phil Egan (@philegansport) March 15, 2022