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The British strike back at Cheltenham Festival as Langer Dan makes it back-to-back Coral Cups

Langer Dan retained his title for Dan and Harry Skelton in the Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, which was only the second winner for a British trainer out of a possible 10.

The eight-year-old struck last year off the same mark and started as a 13/2 chance to return the trophy to owner Colm Donlon’s mantelpiece.

After moving sweetly in the mid-division Langer Dan inched his way into the race as it developed before powering into the lead up the hill, pulling away to win comfortably on the line, by three and a half lengths from Ballyadam.

The winning trainer said: “He’s a remarkable little horse. He had surgery after winning this last year, which made him miss Aintree.

“Colm has had a torrid time with his two big guns ruled out, but this horse just knows how to do it on the big day.

“I’m very proud of the whole team, he’s bled on occasions this year and he had ulcers which we’ve treated – he’s just remarkable.

“Just in the last few weeks he’s started to come alive. The plan on Saturday was to work him with the slowest horse we had and to make sure he won and he won by a head.

“I just thought a head was better than nothing as he hadn’t been winning a raffle recently – he’s remarkable.”

He added: “Winners here mean so much. While we do the job 365 days a year, these four mean more than any other so you have to bring the right horse.”

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