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Gold Cup champ Al Boum Photo impresses on winning return at Tramore

Willie Mullins hints that Cheltenham might be the next stop for the defending champion.

Al Boum Photo: can he make it back-to-back Gold Cups? (file photo)
Al Boum Photo: can he make it back-to-back Gold Cups? (file photo)
Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

AL BOUM PHOTO kicked off his Cheltenham Gold Cup defence with a winning return to action at Tramore this afternoon.

Back in action for the first time since the Punchestown Festival last May, Willie Mullins’ champion eased clear to a six-length win in the Grade 3 Savills Chase.

Bookmakers quickly moved to trim his odds of a successful Gold Cup defence from 6/1 to 5/1 generally, with Mullins indicating that he may go straight to Prestbury Park from here. 

Ridden by Paul Townend, the 4/7 favourite only faced three rivals —  two stablemates in Acapella Bourgeois and Voix du Reve as well as Gigginstown charge Shattered Love.

Townend was happy to up to pace from about six furlongs out, and with Al Boum Photo holding an easy lead over Acapella Bourgeois from two out, two clean jumps sealed an impressive win.

“I was very happy and couldn’t be more happy with the way the day worked out,” Mullins said afterwards.

“I’m leaning towards going straight to the Gold Cup with him from here again.”

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Niall Kelly

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