Horse Racing RACING Sport

Cheltenham Festival 2024: Victorious Paul Townend and Willie Mullins delighted with back-to-back Galopin Des Champs Gold Cup victories

Cheltenham Gold Cup 2024 winner Galopin Des Champs’ jockey Paul Townend and trainer Willie Mullins have hailed their “champion” horse who secured a second successive win.

The bookies’ favourite saw plenty of competition in the early stages of the 100th race, The Real Whacker strode ahead in the first circuit, meanwhile stray horse Fastorslow cut up the competition having lost J J Slevin to a fall.

But it was a back-to-back win for Galopin who showed incredible nous to evade the competition – streaking home to secure the trophy.

“Unbelievable, we had to go through his reserves,” winning jockey Paul Townend said on ITV Sport.

“I rode him completely differently to last year and was so brave for me.

“I was afraid we didn’t have enough but it’s the Gold Cup so we had to go for it.

“What makes him a champion? His heart probably.

“We had to go through his reserve which only special horses have.”

Victorious trainer Mullins has truly stamped his authority on the Festival once again, sweeping the competition with an incredible triumph.

“I just think he put himself into the superstar category,” Mullins lauded on ITV Sport.

“To do what he did with a loose horse.

“Paul was so positive on him, we’ll come back for a third year next year.

“The loose horse caused issues, he hit one of the first fences.

“Paul just seems to travel on him so easily.

“He’s doing everything right, it was great to win one this year.

“If we got him here okay we believed he’d be in the front-running.”

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