Kauto Star claims a fourth King George VI Chase win
Kauto Star gives Ruby Walsh yet another big race success
Kauto Star became the first horse to claim a record four consecutive victories in the King George VI Chase.
The 8-13 favourite thrilled the huge Kempton crowd and was never challenged once he took the lead on the home turn, winning by more than 30 lengths.
Ruby Walsh safely guided the dual Cheltenham Gold Cup hero over the last three fences for a comfortable win.
Madison du Berlais edged out Barbers Shop in a tight race for second, finishing long after the winner.
The triumph for the nine-year-old Kauto Star sees him eclipse the achievements of Desert Orchid, who won the traditional Christmas showpiece four times in the space of five years from 1986-91.
Nacarat and Ollie Magern set a stern early pace but Kauto Star was never too far away from the leading two and once Ollie Magern faded, it was not long before Kauto moved alongside Nacarat.
Imperial Commander, who ran Kauto close at Haydock last time out, committed a bad mistake at the second fence and he struggled to get competitive after that while Deep Purple and Racing Demon were both pulled up as Kauto triumphed by a distance.
Walsh said: "For any horse to come back for the same race four years on the trot is some ask, but to win it is incredible and it is an absolute privilege to ride him. He's an amazing horse
"I'd say that was the best King George I've ridden in as regards pace, they went a really good gallop and I couldn't believe the way he jumped the fourth-last.
"I was still on the bridle when I got to Nacarat, and Barbers Shop was the only other horse still in view."
Nicholls had been impressed with the form of Kauto Star coming into the race and he was delighted with the way he saw off the rest of the field.
"I knew he was at his best and I can't believe how much he has improved," he said. "I don't think he has ever run better.
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