BetVictor Gold Cup Ante-Post Preview – Cheltenham 18/11/2017
The new National Hunt season in Britain and Ireland gets into full swing with the BetVictor Gold Cup on Saturday.
Foxtail Hill and Le Prezien set for re-match
The £160,000 two and a half mile handicap chase has attracted a strong entry of 22 horses led by Kerry Lee’s Top Gamble. The nine-year-old is set to carry 11st 12lbs and has not raced since being well beaten at Aintree’s Grand National meeting.
Kylemore Lough is rated 5lbs inferior despite finishing ahead of him that day. Harry Fry trains the eight-year-old, the winner of the Ryanair Gold Cup in Ireland last year. Kylemore Lough ran well over course and distance in December when fifth to Frodon. He has been dropped a couple of pounds since.
Foxtail Hill beat Le Prezien by a neck over two miles here at the October meeting. He made all of the running to repel the Nicholls’ horse who was attempting to concede 4lbs. Le Prezien is 1lb better off on Saturday but this race is over a further half a mile. Foxtail Hill has form over this trip having beaten Saphir De Rheu back in January.
Nicholls is also expected to run Romain De Senam, a French import by Saint Des Saints. He won narrowly at Stratford last month, defying a 6lbs penalty for a previous win at Chepstow. The five-year-old seems is very progressive and ran well at Aintree and Ayr last season. The ground could be a big factor as Romain De Senam has shown his best form on faster ground.
Starchitect raised 4lbs in BetVictor Gold Cup
Irish raider Tully East had a recent run at Punchestown over hurdles. That should have sharpened him up and this race will have been his target since the Cheltenham Festival in March. He won the Listed novices’ handicap chase and he is 10lbs higher this weekend.
Starchitect represents David Pipe, a three lengths winner at Stratford at the start of the month. He carried 11st 12lbs that day and is only 4lbs higher in the BetVictor Gold Cup. Nicky Henderson has three entries including Gold Present. He was second to Tully East in March before falling in the Topham Chase at Aintree. Theinval was fourth at Ascot recently over two miles but is much more effective at this distance. He is another who would prefer good ground at Cheltenham.
Ian Williams enjoyed a terrific weekend with big wins on the flat and over hurdles. He would run Ballyalton, a ten-year-old gelding by Pierre. He was sixth over hurdles last month and was a course and distance winner at the festival last season.
Cheltenham Betting Tips 18/11/2017
2.25 BetVictor Gold Cup
Foxtail Hill @13.0 Betfair
Le Prezien @11.0 Betfair
Each-way ¼ odds, 1,2,3,4