Cheltenham Festival most winning trainer Willie Mullins is looking secure a third straight win in the Gold Cup having not won the event in his training career before the last two years and his hat-trick seeking horse Al Boum Photo is said to be flying at home ahead of the Friday feature.
Al Boum Photo has been the winner of the Grade Three Savills Chase at Tramore on New Year's Day for the last three seasons and after winning that event has gone on to land the Gold Cup in the last two years.
Straight after this seasons race Mullins was not overjoyed with the superstars performance, but on reflection was a little harsh on his stable star after the nine year old went on to beat stablemate Acapella Bourgeois by 19 lengths.
He is looking to make history this season by becoming the fourth horse to win the the race three years on the bounce and Mullins has announced he will not run again before the Cheltenham feature event.
With that run under his belt, Mullins has also done some extensive work with the superstar at home and the handler admits he is in fine fettle ahead of his return to Prestbury Park.
Mullins said: “He’s in great shape. He worked well last week and he’s a big bit of work coming up this week.
“He’s uncomplicated, he’s very nice to train.
“I didn’t think when we were buying him we’d be in this position, or indeed the day that he ran out in Punchestown, or when he had the mishap with Ruby (Walsh) jumping the last at Cheltenham.
“He’s got a funny back history – but here he is, a double Gold Cup winner going for his third. We’re very privileged to have him.”