The Weekend Winners team take a look at Saturday’s Paddy Power Gold Cup and Lingfield’s Golden Rose Stakes.
The first big handicap chase of the jumps season will be run at Cheltenham on Saturday, with 14 runners going to post for the Paddy Power Gold Cup Handicap Chase, giving the panel an interesting puzzle to solve ahead of a busy weekend.
The feature meeting on Sky Sports Racing is at Lingfield, where the Golden Rose Stakes is one of two Listed races on the card.
The Weekend Winners team have analysed the two races, as well as some of the other action at Cheltenham over the weekend…..
At The Races expert Declan Rix on the Paddy Power Gold Cup….
“This is a belter. I’m really looking forward to this race and seeing how it pans out.
“I came down on Notlongtillmay because I was looking at the trends for the race and 2015 was the last time a horse won the Paddy Power without a prep run. With all the rain forecast around Cheltenham it’s going to be proper soft ground so I wanted a horse who’s had a run and he fitted the bill.
“He ran a cracker at the October meeting last time out over a trip too short on ground that was maybe quick enough for him, but he shaped really well. He jumps well and travels strongly and this intermediate trip suits him really well.”
BetVictor’s Sam Boswell…
“I’m all over The Real Whacker. He is going to have to do something that lots of horses have tried to do and failed with here in terms of carrying top weight, but I think he’s a very, very classy horse.
“I think he’s tailor-made to come back in trip, it will see him in a good light. The pace of the race is really going to help him.
“His record at Cheltenham is great and he has won after a break previously so I don’t think that’s going to be an issue. He could be the plunge horse for me.”
Host Kate Tracey…
“Angels Breath still remains pretty unexposed. He’s a nine-year-old but with only nine rules starts to his name so far and I thought his run last time out on his reappearance will have teed him up perfectly for this, second at Cheltenham, but over hurdles. He ran well there, under top weight as well which sees his chase mark protected.”
Declan Rix on the Golden Rose Stakes….
“I wanted to take on Mischief Magic and I eventually came down on Pink Crystal. She’s drawn in nine and she’s going to need a very good ride from Richard Kingscote for the race to pan out nicely for her from there.
“But she’s a progressive filly, she’s had a really good season, she’s tough, honest and consistent and she’s got plenty of all-weather form. I’m hoping she can close down this field late and get up on the line.”
“The favourite (Mischief Magic), plenty of respect for that last-time-out win but he’s just too short for me.
“Favourites, that said, have won the last three renewals but one of those is a 20/1 shot in this and I’m a massive fan of Summerghand. I don’t understand the price.
“Two from four at Lingfield, he definitely handles the all-weather surface and he seems to take his racing well. You know he’s going to be plenty fresh enough for this, David Probert rides and I thought he’s an each-way play.”
“I’m in total agreement. He was 2/1 favourite for this last year and 20/1 Summerghand is far too big for me. He’s carrying the same weight as last year and he’s well enough off at the weights this time around I still think.
“He’s a nine-year-old but he’s only run twice on the all-weather since success in this race last year. He’s just done his usual this season, he’s won big-field handicaps on the turf, he’s reached the frame in others and been not so good in other ones. The price is just a bit bemusing for me.”
Watch all the action from Lingfield, Uttoxeter and Wolverhampton live on Sky Sports Racing on Saturday.