THIS race is always a cracker and it’s always a good one for the punter. Desert Orchid, One Man, Kauto Star and Kicking King are just some of the fancied runners to win.
Paul Nicholls has won this race 9 times with 7 coming in the last 9 years. My opinion this year is the bookies have got this one well wrong, Silviniaco Conti at 8-1 is massive but I can see why.
Don Cossack is probably the one the bookies had to have as favourite at Kempton on Saturday but there are holes in the form and a lot of them.
Who has he beat really? Horses that are simple nowhere near top class or horses that were out of form. Kempton over 3 miles won’t be the stamina test he wants and he is one of some of these who is being prepared for Cheltenham.
Vautour in my mind is far too short a price for a horse that won’t be 100 per cent till Cheltenham plus his jumping isn’t good enough for a fast race like this but more importantly Kempton is right handed, Vautour is better going left,
Cue Card beat Silviniaco Conti last time and since his breathing operation he has been a different horse but I am still not convinced with him when he gets asked the question.
Silviniaco Conti has run in the King George twice and won both times, he loves 3 miles at Kempton. It’s a fast track that needs a good quick jumper and that’s what Silviniaco Conti is.
Reading the reports after his last run both trainer and jockey didn’t fancy Conti that day as they would have preferred the horse to have had a chase run under his belt beforehand. Nicholls even said he wished the race had been a couple of weeks later.
Forget the last two Gold Cups, this is the race Conti has been prepared 100 per cent for in the past and it’s the same this year. My opinion is this season Silviniaco Conti has two main targets, the King George VI Chase and the Grand National.
Johnb’s First 3
1st – Silviniaco Conti
2nd – Cue Card
3rd – Smad Place