Diakali: 20-1 with BetVictor for the Champion Hurdle after smooth winPICTURE: Scoopdyga
Diakali gives Mullins
and Walsh more glory
Report: France, Sunday
Prix Alain du Breil (Group 1) 2m3½f, 4yo
WILLIE MULLINS and Ruby Walsh combined for more big-race success on Sunday when Diakali landed the Group 1 Prix Alain du Breil at Auteuil.
The pair have teamed up to win the Grand National and Champion Hurdle as well as many more of Britain and Ireland's top jumps prizes, while Blackstairmountain provided them with a brilliant win in Japan's Nakayama Grand Jump in April.
They were at it again with Diakali, who was introduced as a 20-1 chance by BetVictor for the Champion Hurdle.
Ridden handily by Walsh, the son of Sinndar powered to victory over the Paul Nicholls-trained Ptit Zig with Le Grand Luce in third.
Willie Mullins: "our boy has done it"PICTURE: Patrick McCann
Diakali was fourth behind Our Conor in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham, before landing the Grade 1 for juveniles at Punchestown in April.
He was second in a Group 3 at Auteuil last month behind stablemate Blood Cotil, who was due to run in Sunday's race but was ruled out as he was lame.
Mullins said of his winner: "It's a very hard thing to do, to travel over and back twice to France and then produce his best form of the year in this race.
"I was very worried about Le Grand Luce and he tracked us throughout the race, but our boy has done it on the day.
"His hurdling was much more efficient today and when I saw him jumping the practice hurdle he was so efficient and so laid back I thought, wow, we might have a good chance here."