Al Boum Photo became the first horse since Best Mate to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup in successive years. Advised at 4/1 in the Festival Update, Willie Mullins' gelding stayed on strongly after the last to withstand the late challenge of Santini to prevail by a neck. With the exception of one mistake down the backstraight, the winner jumped well and travelled strongly. The runner-up would have appreciated a stronger early gallop and possibly slower ground. However, he ran a blinder and is likely to be back in twelve months time to attempt to go one better. Colin Tizzard has had a wretched week but he must have been very proud of the run of Lostintranslation in third. Like the winner, he jumped brilliantly and held every chance at the last. The last furlong appeared to tax his stamina though.
It has been a superb week for the Update with 7 winners in total and it was satisfying to see Saint Roi win the County Hurdle. Advised at 20/1, he hadn't been seen since winning a maiden hurdle at Tramore on New Year's day and was granted an opening mark of 137 which seriously underestimated his ability. Given a confident ride by Barry Geraghty, the ex-French gelding jumped the last well before showing too much speed for his stablemate Aramon to win hard held by four and a half lengths. He is a Graded horse in the making and has a bright future.
Other selections in the Update who ran well on Friday included Fury Road (advised @ 14/1) who finished a close third in the Albert Bartlett and stablemate Eclair De Beaufeu (advised @ 12/1) who chased home stablemate Chosen Mate in the Grand Annual Chase. And finally, Pileon (advised @ 8/1) was headed on the line in the closing Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle.
The French Revolution section in One Jump Ahead has enjoyed an excellent week with 3 winners. Aramax (15/2) won the Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle on Wednesday and Burning Victory (12/1) and Saint Roi (11/2) scored on Friday.
Thank you to all those clients who have emailed this week, it is much appreciated. It has been a great few days. Time to pour a drink. Fingers crossed the selection in Saturday's Midlands National runs well.
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