Horse racing punters will be tuned to action from the emerald isle on Sunday where Willie Mullins holds a strong hand in the Hennessy Gold Cup at 3.50 Leopardstown.
Boston Bob heads the betting for the Closutton handler at best odds 7/2 with Paddy Power of the bookmakers that have priced up the race so far, while 2014 Cheltenham Gold Cup runner-up On His Own is a standout 7/2 with Titanbet.
A dual Grade 1 winner last spring, Boston Bob failed to get his head in front in three outings this term, including when beaten 6 lengths into fourth in the Lexus Chase over course and distance at Christmas. The 10-year-old certainly has the ability to win and if running to top form will most likely come out on top, but does have a bit to prove at the moment.
On His Own meanwhile, was around 5 lengths in front of Boston Bob in the Lexus having set a good gallop before being headed only late on and will likely go from the front again. The 11-year-old was desperately unlucky to go down by a short head in the Gold Cup last March and with Lord Windermere contesting this race on his way to winning the big one on that occasion, punters will be keeping a close eye on the form of this race ahead of the 2015 Cheltenham Festival.
If it’s not one of the Mullins pair that wins, Carlingford Lough has won at Grade 1 level over course and distance and may be seen as the most likely contender to step up having perhaps needed the run in the Lexus, while Foxrock was runner-up in the Paddy Power Chase at this venue over the festive period before winning the valuable BoyleSports Chase over 2 miles 5 furlongs here last month and may not have reached the ceiling of his ability.
Hennessy Gold Cup 10 Year Trends
9 won during their last three runs
9 won 36% or more of their career chase runs
9 ran during the last 31-60 days
8 ran over 3m last time
8 had 1-3 career runs at Leopardstown
8 arrived via Leopardstown
8 ran in a Grade 1 event last time
Willie Mullins won it four times