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Kemboy proves Supreme as he dominates rivals in Betway Bowl

Kemboy clears the last before zipping clear up the run-in to win the Betway Bowl
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Scarves sporting two shades of blue brightened a rain-splattered winner’s enclosure after members of owners Supreme Horse Racing Club celebrated a second top-level success with rising star chaser Kemboy.

Paddy Power were suitably impressed to shorten Kemboy to 8-1 (from 33) for next season's Cheltenham Gold Cup, in which he unseated his rider at the first fence last month. Maybe that was the pointer punters were looking for.

A first-fence departure should be noted where the thoroughly progressive seven-year-old is concerned. He exited at that fence in the Irish Grand National in April before reeling off a four-timer during the remainder of the year.

Bouncing back to form with a bang is a fine attribute and the Ruby Walsh-ridden Kemboy did just that again, travelling best, jumping best and making most to run out an impressive nine-length winner over King George VI Chase scorer Clan Des Obeaux.

A drenched and delighted Steve Massey, UK racing manager for the owners – 16 of which are involved in Kemboy – said: "We're wet through but couldn't care less – we're absolutely buzzing. He's a great horse and this is a dream come true.

Kemboy: stretches clear of his rivals in the Betway Bowl Chase

"It's been a fantastic journey with him – there's been ups and downs but he's special and bounces back every time.

"You can't believe when you buy into these horses that they'll actually end up being this good. The sole aim is to win a race to start with, but he's done it in style at the top level and is going to go a long way."

The Coral Punchestown Gold Cup on May 1, which Mullins landed with Bellshill last year, is next on the agenda with the Closutton trainer celebrating a first victory in the Betway Bowl since Florida Pearl's success in 2002.

Mullins, taking congratulatory handshakes left, right and centre, said: "Freshness was key as he just went on his holidays to Cheltenham really when he exited at the first and in a way that has counted in his favour here.

"Everything suited him and he loved it. He's well able to stay over this trip and it's what he needs.

"We haven't been too hard on him this season so he should be fine to go for the Punchestown Gold Cup. He's had a great season and can go on further from here – he could be very good."

Clan Des Obeaux stuck to his task willingly in chasing the winner on the run-in with Paul Nicholls pinpointing a repeat King George bid as the main target for next season.

Nicholls said: "He's run a good race but I was concerned about all the rain beforehand as he does like slightly better ground. He's had a long old season and Harry did say he thinks he may be slightly better going right-handed.

"We'll aim him for the same sort of races next season and the King George will be the number one target because he loves it around there. He's had a great season and won't run again."

Balko Des Flos belied big odds to finish a head back in third and could also be Punchestown-bound.

Henry de Bromhead said: "That was much more like it. A bit of ease in the ground really helped him.

"We need to work on his jumping a bit more but he ran really well – the mistake at the last cost him second, but he would never have troubled the winner.

"He's a very good horse and he's shown he's coming back to his old self – if he's okay he could go to Punchestown."


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It?s been a fantastic journey with him ? there?s been ups and downs but he's special and bounces back every time
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