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    Galopin Des Champs Poised for Cheltenham Gold Cup Defence
Galopin Des Champs Poised for Cheltenham Gold Cup Defence
Galopin Des Champs (centre) by Patrick McCann

Galopin Des Champs Poised for Cheltenham Gold Cup Defence

Galopin Des Champs emerged as the 7/5 favourite in last year's Cheltenham Gold Cup, despite facing doubts over his stamina for the gruelling three miles, two furlongs, and 70 yards.

However, those concerns were swiftly put to rest as he surged up the challenging Cheltenham hill to secure a commanding seven-length victory.

The reigning champion now stands as the overwhelming favourite to retain his title, with current odds of 4/5 (non-runner no bet). The pivotal question remains - does this price offer true value, or should punters seek an alternative contender to challenge the champion on Friday 15th March?

Following his stellar performance at Cheltenham last season, Galopin Des Champs faced setbacks, notably succumbing to defeats in subsequent races. Despite these hurdles, his recent triumph in the Savills Chase at Leopardstown showcased his undeniable class, with a remarkable 23-length victory over his rivals, including Gerri Colombe.

In preparation for his Gold Cup defence, Galopin Des Champs triumphed once more in the Irish Gold Cup at the Dublin Racing Festival, avenging his prior loss to Fastorslow at Punchestown. While Fastorslow emerges as a credible each-way option at 9/2, doubts linger over his readiness for the Gold Cup distance.

Shishkin, a mercurial talent, presents an intriguing prospect in the upcoming renewal. Despite his erratic tendencies, his recent victories at Newcastle and impressive form at extended distances render him a compelling each-way choice at 7/1.

Hewick, a bargain purchase, boasts the credentials to challenge for Gold Cup glory following his King George VI Chase victory. However, his success hinges on favourable ground conditions, with his preference for decent footing posing a significant obstacle.

As the Gold Cup approaches, contenders like Gerri Colombe and Bravemansgame aim to upset the reigning champion. While their form suggests potential, the likes of L'Homme Presse face uphill battles to make an impact, requiring substantial improvement to contend.

In a fiercely competitive field, Galopin Des Champs stands as the frontrunner, with his odds reflecting a strong likelihood of triumph. A replication of his past heroics promises another coronation for the champion, making him the standout choice for victory on Friday 15th March.

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