Frodon and Bryony Frost grabbed Galvin in a thrilling finale in front of Ladbrokes Champion Chase at the Down Royal.

The first-class hunt for the new National Hunt season has been good enough to honor any of the Spring Festivals, with the five contestants having achieved a taste of success at Cheltenham Festival in the past.

Joining Frodon, winner of the King George award, last year’s Gold Cup top scorer was Minella Indo, as well as top-tier winner Delta Work and Galvin, winner of his last six.

Frodon adopted his usual lead role and put in some amazing leaps and bounds, but Rachel Blackmore was careful not to let Paul Nichols’ mission go too far in Minella Indo.

The trio of Gordon Elliott of Delta Work, Galvin and Ravenhill finished in the bottom three in the first half of the race, as Ravenhill struggled to keep up.

With five fences still being jumped, Frodon’s delicate fence was pressing on Minella Indo but Blackmore pushed her closer, while Galvin and Delta Work crept in.

When they rejected the hill that Frost had kicked, they were lined up behind it and the three looked great threats.

Delta Work was the first to crack, but Frodon still had to outpace Minella Endo and Galvin.

Then Minella Indo’s lack of running started telling us, but Galvin joined forces with Frodon to jump in the last two and the duo produced a real thrill.

It was Frodon who triumphed by three-quarters of the length.

Betfair cut Frodon to 5-1 from 12 seconds to retain King George’s crown.

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