Day Four of a fantastic Cheltenham Festival is upon us and we look at the feature races on the card. There’s no better place to start than the Blue Riband event of the meeting and it looks like a hugely competitive Gold Cup renewal.
In a wide-open heat, it might be best to look for some each-way value and Al Boum Photo fills that category. He’s looking to end Willie Mullins’ long wait for Gold Cup success and is one of four the Irish Champion Trainer sends over.
Al Boum Photo is unlucky not to have won two Grade 1 races already. After a Grade 1 success at Fairyhouse in testing conditions, he looked certain to make it back-to-back wins at the highest level at Punchestown before he crashed out through the wing when Paul Townend mistakenly thought he was to bypass the fence.
He returned with a six-length success at Tramore in Listed company last time out, jumping better than ever and beating a useful yardstick in Total Recall in dominant fashion.
There’s every chance he has more improvement to come at the age of just seven years old and he can be forgiven his fall here last year when he took a tired tumble.
There’s no doubt it’s a competitive renewal but Might Bite is another who looked overpriced. A gallant runner-up in this race last year, he went on to Grade 1 success in the Aintree Bowl next time.
He’s been below-par this campaign but has had a wind operation and been freshened up since his most recent run and looks overpriced.
There’s often some value to be found in the Foxhunters and former winner Pacha Du Polder looks overpriced at around 16/1.
He was impressive when getting up to win last year, a second Foxhunter success, and the yard could hardly be arriving in better form, running at a strike-rate exceeding 35% in recent weeks.
It’s likely he needed his reappearance run when beaten at Haydock last time out and he won’t mind the likely testing conditions, having won in soft ground last year.