Annie Power surges to victory in the Champion Hurdle

She becomes the first mare to win the renewal in 22 years

Annie Power led throughout and saw off the challenge of My Tent or Yours and stablemate Nichols Canyon to claim the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham this afternoon.

Under Ruby Walsh, the 5-2 favourite moved with ease throughout and with three to jump quickened the pace to push ahead of the chasing pack.

There would be no repeat of last year's fall at the final hurdle, when the eight year-old misjudged the last and shadow-jumped at the Mares' Hurdle.

She was under pressure early on from The New One and Nichols Canyon, but where the former failed to convince in the final jumps the latter didn't have enough in the tank in the finish, settling for third place behind My Tent or Yours.

"She deserved it, she's a great mare" an emotional Ruby Walsh told Channel 4 after the race.

Annie Power now becomes the first mare in 22 years to win the Champion Hurdle.