Cheltenham Gold Cup

Cheltenham Gold Cup Preview

The Cheltenham Gold Cup is the flagship event of the Cheltenham Festival and at 3 miles 2f it is quite the marathon. There will be a flurry of online betting as 2 big names go tete-a-tete. In the past 3 years it was somewhat of a 2 horse race as Kauto Star and Denman were well ahead of their rivals. This year is no different and the betting reflects the likelihood that Paul Nicholls will be going home with the trophy, one way or another.

Gold Cup Favourites

The Gold Cup pitts the 2 jewels in the Nicholls’ stable crown against one another to fight it out for the biggest prize in British fence racing. Last year’s winner Kauto Star followed up victory with wins in the Betfair Chase in November at Haydock followed by further glory at Kempton on Boxing Day in the King George VI Chase. The 10 year old gelding will of course be bidding for his third triumph in the Gold Cup, having also beaten all before him hre in 2007. Proven in all kinds of weather and footing means that Ruby Walsh and Kauto Star are sure to be in the shake up come the finish line at this year’s Gold Cup. Kauto Star is currently available at odds of 11/8 with Paddy Power.

Denman has had some ups and downs in the past year. In 2007 he won the Royal and Sun Alliance Chase which was on the back of 8 wins in his first 9 starts. This was followed up by 3 more impressive performances which included victories in the Hennessy Gold Cup, Lexus Chase and Aon Chase. He the ran out a clear 7 length winner over Kauto Star in the Cheltenham Gold Cup and then there was ‘potential best of all time’ talk before the news broke that Denman needed to get treatment for an irregular heartbeat. The laws of chance had conspired against Denman and, just when things couldn’t have been going better.

A lacklustre display leading up to last years festival and with massive question marks over his health Denman went off at the 13/2 second favourite. He ran an brave race but looked a shadow of himself when comfortably beaten into second by Kauto Star. However all is not lost and the latest twist in the saga is that, with Ruby Walsh on board he ran out a clear winner of the Hennessy Gold Cup in November. A P McCoy saddled him for the first time in the Aon Chase just last week and he was unseated during the race after going off as a red hot favourite. This offers no real help to me in making a decision in the Gold Cup. His jumping is not a concern and the unseating should not be read into too deeply. Whether indeed he will be at his very best for the festival or whether he is still feeling the effects of that irregular heartbeat is still very much up in the air.

Gold Cup Betting Guide

I have not yet made my mind up. I know that Denman on his day is the pick of the 2 but don’t have enough to go on to believe that he can rekindle the flame and run out clear winner for a second time in 3 years. I’ll possibly have a small bet on this one but nothing major. It’s one of the very few horse races that I am happy to just sit back and enjoy for the most part.

Such is the expected dominance of the Nicholls yard in this race that Imperial Commander is deemed ‘best of the rest’ and is available at 14/1.

This concludes our preview of the 2010 Cheltenham Gold Cup. If you would like to have a bet then check out our free bets table below which will link you through to the best sign up offers around. Our  Online Betting Guide is a must read for those gearing up for the festival.

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