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Cheltenham Gold Cup field is wide open

This year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup promises to be the most competitive for many years and the number of horses going there with a chance of winning runs into double figures. Only four lengths covered the first five home 12 months ago, but it would be no surprise if even more horses were involved in the finish in 2015. Here, we take a little look at some of those who will be seeking Gold Cup glory.

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by  Carine06 

SILVINIACO CONTI

Ante-post favourite for the race and a regular in the Cheltenham betting news for the Gold Cup, Silviniaco Conti looks better than ever this season after a dominant win in the King George at Kempton last time. A faller in the Gold Cup in 2013, and fourth last year, Silviniaco Conti is primed to run his best race yet.

MANY CLOUDS

The impressive Hennessy winner at Newbury, Many Clouds proved he can handle Cheltenham when winning the BetBright Cup Chase on Trials Day. He was brought down in the RSA Chase last season and any mention of the word soft in the going would boost his chances.

ROAD TO RICHES

Noel Meade’s horse has stepped out of handicap company after winning the Galway Plate last summer to win back-to-back Grade One races. He stayed on very strongly to win the Lexus Chase at Leopardstown over Christmas, but has to prove he will get the extra two furlongs of the Gold Cup trip.

CARLINGFORD LOUGH

The Irish Hennessy winner will be the retiring Tony McCoy’s last ride in the Gold Cup. He was fifth behind Road To Riches in the Lexus Chase and only sixth in the RSA Chase at the Festival last year. There would be no more popular winner of the Gold Cup this year.

CONEYGREE

The unbeaten novice is expected to be given the go-ahead to run in the Gold Cup after three wins from three chase starts. He had been off the track for approaching two years before his winning return in November and he looked very smart in the Denman Chase last time.

HOLYWELL

A winner of the three-mile Handicap Chase on the opening day of the Festival last year, Holywell went on to win a Grade One novice chase at Aintree. Third behind Many Clouds on his reappearance, Holywell returned to form at Kelso last time.

DJAKADAM

A faller in the JLT last year, Djakadam put himself in line for a crack at the Gold Cup after an impressive win in the Thyestes Chase last time. Full of potential, Djakadam will have to prove his stamina.

LORD WINDERMERE

Last year’s winner and the 2013 RSA Chase hero, Lord Windermere showed encouraging signs when third in the Irish Hennessy. He looks to be heading to Cheltenham in better form than 12 months ago and has to be respected.

BOBS WORTH

Like Lord Windermere, Bobs Worth has done the RSA Chase-Gold Cup double and he was unsuited by the soft ground when well beaten in the Lexus Chase. His past form at Cheltenham means he can’t be ignored.

ON HIS OWN

Beaten just a short head by Lord Windermere last year, On His Own came close to providing Willie Mullins with his first Gold Cup winner. He has been in mixed form so far this season, finishing second in the Lexus Chase, but then only sixth in the Irish Hennessy.

SAM WINNER

He will be staying on when others have given up after winning over three miles, three furlongs at Cheltenham earlier this season. He has been kept fresh for the Gold Cup by Paul Nicholls after finishing third in the Lexus Chase.

THE GIANT BOLSTER

Seems to save his best for the Gold Cup after finishing second in 2012, fourth in 2013 and a close-up third last year. It does look a tougher ask this time around, but you can never rule him out. 

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