Tip For Sandown’s Bet365 Gold Cup On Saturday: Minella Can Prove The Daddy In Saturday’s Bet365 Gold Cup
April 25, 2018
The Peter Bowan-trained Henllan Harri will attempt to win back-to-back bet365 Gold Cup’s at Sandown on Saturday but the ten-year-old will be racing from 7lb out of the handicap should top weight Blaklion stand his ground at the final declaration stage, leaving the way open for stablemate Minella Daddy to take the 3m 5f handicap off a lenient mark of 137.
The historic chase, known for many years as the Whitbread Gold Cup, is the last major handicap of the season and has been won by some of the sport’s greats down the years including Desert Orchid, Mill House and the incomparable Arkle. Nothing in this year’s renewal is good enough to be mentioned in the same breath as the triple Cheltenham Gold Cup winner of the 1960’s but with a possible maximum field of twenty Saturday’s big betting race is certainly competitive if nothing else.
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The Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Blaklion heads the ante-post betting at a general 6-1 following his unfortunate experience in the Grand National two weeks ago when brought down at the first fence. Having not had a race at Aintree this is surely plan B for the son of Kayf Tara rather than a long-term objective, something which could not be said of Minella Daddy, a best price 16/1 with Betvictor and Boylesports.
The easy winner of races at Ffos Las and Ascot last season the Flemensfirth gelding stepped up in class for his next start in the valuable Silver Cup back at the Berkshire venue and after leading at the second-last just failed to hold the late challenge of Regal Encore, going down by three quarters of a length off a 5lb higher mark than he will carry on Saturday. While slightly disappointing in three outings this season they all came on soft or heavy ground so the forecast good going anticipated at the Esher track will hopefully see the eight-year-old at his very best.
The biggest danger to the selection could prove to be the unexposed Step Back who has only three chases to his name but ran out an impressive winner at Fakenham on his most recent start.
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