Verdana Blue beats Buveur D'Air in shock Unibet Christmas Hurdle win

Verdana Blue ended the long unbeaten run of dual champion hurdler Buveur D'Air in the Unibet Christmas Hurdle at Kempton.

Both horses are trained by Nicky Henderson, and they had it between them from the second-last, where it looked like 1-4 favourite Buveur D'Air was always just going to do enough to hold on.

He had made a terrible blunder at the third-last, hardly taking off, although it barely checked his momentum and Barry Geraghty seemingly had everything under control as he took up the running from Global Citizen.

However, Nico de Boinville had yet to ask the mare Verdana Blue (11-2) for everything and she was gaining with every stride after the last.

Buveur D'Air had not been beaten over hurdles since the Supreme Novices' Hurdle in 2016, and while he continued to respond for Geraghty, Verdana Blue had too much speed for him this time, providing Henderson with an eighth win in the race.