Eight-times Grade 1 winner Faugheen bids to make amends for a below-par effort last time when he faces seven rivals in the BHP Insurance Irish Champion Hurdle (3.30), one of three Grade 1 races down for decision on the opening day of the inaugural Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown. 

The Willie Mullins-trained 2015 Cheltenham Champion Hurdler, who flopped at the Dublin track over Christmas after going off the 2/11 favourite, is joined by his two stable companions' Melon and Bapaume and is ridden again by Paul Townend.

The 2m race has added interest as the JP McManus-owned Defi Du Seuil, winner of the 2017 Triumph Hurdle and beaten just once in eight starts, has also been declared representing Somerset trainer Philip Hobbs.

The last British-trained winner of the race was Collier Bay trained by Jim Old in 1996 and British champion rider Richard Johnson, successful three times before aboard Defi Du Seuil, travels over to take the ride again. 

The field is completed by the Gordon Elliott-trained Mick Jazz, the surprise winner of the Grade 1 Ryanair Hurdle at Leopardstown over Christmas when Faugheen was dramatically pulled up, along with the Jessica Harrington-trained pair, Supasundae and Jezki, and Identity Thief from the Henry de Bromhead stable.

Mullins also has two runners among the five declared for the Grade 1 Frank Ward Solicitors Arkle Novice Chase (2.20). Footpad, ante post favourite for the Racing Post Arkle at Cheltenham next month, is joined by the unbeaten Demi Sang whose owner JP McManus is also represented with Any Second Now partnered by Mark Walsh. 

The Henry de Bromhead-trained Petit Mouchoir, who won the BHP Insurance Irish Champion Hurdle 12 months ago, is also unbeaten over fences and could rubber stamp his Cheltenham prospects here under Davy Russell.

Racing gets underway with the Grade 1 Lacy & Partners Solicitors Novice Hurdle (1.10) which has attracted a field of seven including the Gordon Elliott-trained dual winner Dortmund Park, ridden again by Davy Russell.

Willie Mullins is doubly represented with Fabulous Saga, the mount of Paul Townend while his nephew David Mullins is booked for stable companion Carter Mckay. 

Min and Simply New renew rivalry in the seven-runner Grade 2 Coral Dublin Chase.

A stewards enquiry here last time saw the Nicky Richards-trained British raider promoted to first place at the expense of the Willie Mullins-trained Min who should be a lot sharper this time but his stable companion Yorkhill may well have the final say in the hands of Paul Townend. 

The going at Leopardstown is currently soft on the hurdle track and soft, yielding in places on the chase track.

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Watch live coverage of the Dublin Racing Festival on RTÉ2 from 1pm Saturday and Sunday