*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at time of publication but subject to change
This is it. The big one. The crown jewel of the Cheltenham Festival. The Blue Riband of jump racing. The best chasers in training will tackle 22 fences over 3m 2f and 70yds on the New Course at Prestbury Park for a shot at joining a host of legendary horses such as Kauto Star, Denman, L’Escargot and Arkle in the Gold Cup roll of honour.
The countdown to Cheltenham continues with Al Boum Photo seeking to become the first horse since Best Mate in 2004 to win the race three years in a row. The Willie Mullins-trained nine-year-old beat Santini by a neck in last year’s thrilling renewal and is the current favourite for glory in 2021.
There’s another previous winner among the runners in the form of 2018 king Native River, who prepared for the big race in fine style by beating Santini in the Cotswold Chase at Sandown. While Paddy Power’s traders think A Plus Tard and Champ, the RSA Novices’ Chase winner who impressed on his seasonal reappearance in the Game Spirit Chase, pose a threat as they’re prominent in the betting.
A total of 41 entries were submitted for this year’s Gold Cup, although the field has been whittled down to 12 for the big day. And you’re in luck as Paddy Power are paying four places instead of three.
GOLD CUP RUNNERS AND ODDS
GOLD CUP TIPS
Timeform: “ROYALE PAGAILLE may still be a novice but the level of form he showed at Haydock means that he won’t be out of place in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, for which he was in the odds should connections choose to go down that route”
Ruby Walsh: “AL BOUM PHOTO could be hard to beat and he could potentially join illustrious company and become a triple Gold Cup winner”
FULL PREVIEW: RUBY WALSH’S GOLD CUP TOP TIP
Frank Hickey: “AL BOUM PHOTO’s got versatility, he won a strongly-run Gold Cup in 2019 and a tactical one in 2020 so what beats him?”
FULL PREVIEW: FRANK HICKEY’S GOLD CUP BEST BET
Andrew Cunneen: “I can see AL BOUM PHOTO being slashed by the Friday, I really can”
FULL PREVIEW: 4 VALUE PLAYS TO CONSIDER IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP RACES
Tony Mullins: “A PLUS TARD‘s a real class horse and he’s the biggest danger.”
Nina Carberry: “Al Boum Photo is rock solid at the top of the betting but I was impressed with how CHAMP jumped over two miles in the Game Spirit Chase.”
FULL PREVIEW: GOLD CUP TIPS FROM TONY MULLINS AND NINA CARBERRY
Matt Chapman: “We all know Al Boum Photo could win this for a third time, but with drying ground and a visor on I’m backing SANTINI each-way for Nicky Henderson and Aidan Coleman.”
FULL PREVIEW: MATT CHAPMAN’S 7 BEST BETS FOR DAY 4 AT THE FESTIVAL
Gina Bryce: “Two-time winner of the race Al Boum Photo has proved his versatility in winning back to back Gold Cups in contrasting style and has to be hugely respected in his bid to land a third success. However another horse who has proven Festival form albeit at a lower level is 2019 handicap chase winner A PLUS TARD who took his form to the next level up in trip this year when winning a very competitive renewal of the Savills Chase in eye catching fashion.”
FULL PREVIEW: GINA BRYCE’S BEST BETS FOR DAY 4 OF THE FESTIVAL
Mick Fitzgerald: “It’s hard to believe AL BOUM PHOTO is going for his third Gold Cup in-a-row. He has gone down a familiar route with one run at Tramore before a Gold Cup tilt and this year’s race should suit him more as Frodon and Native River will set a strong pace up front.”
FULL PREVIEW: MICK FITZGERALD’S BEST BETS FOR DAY 4 OF THE FESTIVAL
WHEN IS THE GOLD CUP?
GOLD CUP WINNERS AT THE LAST FIVE FESTIVALS
2020 – Al Boum Photo (Horse), Paul Townend (Jockey), Willie Mullins (Trainer)
2019 – Al Boum Photo, Paul Townend, Willie Mullins
2018 – Native River, Richard Johnson, Colin Tizzard
2017 – Sizing John, Robbie Power, Jessica Harrington
2016 – Don Cossack, Bryan Cooper, Gordon Elliott
- DON’T MISS OUR BRAND NEW SNAZZY RACECARDS FOR EVERY SINGLE RACE TODAY
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CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL REMAINING BIG RACES
March 19 – 13.20 – Triumph Hurdle latest odds and tips
March 19 – 14.30 – Albert Bartlett Novices’ Chase latest odds and tips
March 19 – 15.05 – Gold Cup latest odds and tips
March 19 – 16.15 – Mrs Paddy Power Mares’ Chase latest odds and tips
CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL DAY FOUR SCHEDULE
13.20 – JCB Triumph Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 179y
13.55 – County Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m 179y
14.30 – Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 7f 213y
15.05 – Cheltenham Gold Cup (Grade 1) 3m 2f 70y
15.40 – St. James’s Place Festival Challenge Cup 3m 2f 70y
16.15 – Mrs Paddy Power Mares’ Chase (Grade 2) 2m 4f 127y
16.50 – Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle 2m 4f 56y
*Paddy will be all over your telly box throughout the Cheltenham Festival sponsoring ITV’s live coverage from Prestbury Park – and you can get free and exclusive tipping columns EVERY DAY from Ruby Walsh, Matt Chapman and Mick Fitzgerald here on PP News.
Cheltenham Day 4 Tips
- Mick Fitzgerald’s best bets for Friday at Prestbury Park
- Matt Chapman’s selections for all of Day 4’s seven races
- Gina Bryce’s slick picks on Friday at Cheltenham
- Paddy Power Pundits’ Cheat Sheet for all of Friday’s races
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