Al Boum Photo, who won the Savills New Year’s Day Chase on his last outing, produced a fantastic performance to win Cheltenham’s showpiece race last year, handing trainer Willie Mullins his first victory in the blue riband event.
The eight-year-old will be aiming to become the first horse since Best Mate in 2004 to successfully defend the title and the gelding is one of 20 horses still in contention for favourable Cheltenham results after the latest scratchings. Bookmaker Paddy Power currently have Al Boum Photo down as their joint-favourite, with odds of 7/2 – but Santini is also being backed at those odds.
Mullins also has the option to give Kemboy – who got the better of his stablemate in the Punchestown Gold Cup last spring – a run in the race after the narrow defeat to Delta Work in the Irish Gold Cup on February 2.
— Annamarie Phelps (@PhelpsAnnamarie) February 13, 2020
Real Steel, who fell at Punchestown in June last time, is another the Irish handler could saddle at Prestbury Park, while Gordon Elliott’s leading contender is Delta Work, who was handed top weight alongside Tiger Roll for April’s Grand National on Tuesday.
Gold Cup winner Garrison Savannah had to settle for second.
Mangan’s 2003 National winner still thriving.
North Yorkshire handler enjoyed fabulous association with Jodami and many others.
Fences beckon next season for Fighting Fifth winner.
Casamento colt has proved stamina up to seven furlongs.