Tag Archive for: Racing Post Gold Cup

Redemption for Coole Cody in Cheltenham feature

Coole Cody made amends for falling on his last visit to Cheltenham when winning the Racing Post Gold Cup at Cheltenham.

Evan Williams’ 10-year-old came down at the second-last when still leading in his bid to lift the Paddy Power Gold Cup for the second successive year last month.

Midnight Shadow took the spoils that day but Coole Cody (12-1) got his revenge in game fashion under Adam Wedge.

He led at the second fence, galloped on strongly all the way and proved impossible to pass, crossing the line two lengths to the good.

Midnight Shadow met the penultimate fence wrong but he was still second until the dying strides where Zanza snatched the runner-up spot by a short head. Midnight Shadow was third with Fusil Raffles fourth.

Wedge said: “Once I got the front, he just starts taking me and enjoying it. He gallops and I knew he wouldn’t lie down.

“It’s a shame what happened the last day, but it was brilliant he’s gone and done that today.

“Evan has done a fantastic job getting the horse’s confidence back and getting him here in A1 condition.”

The International – Day Two – Cheltenham Racecourse – Saturday 11th December
Coole Cody soars over the last (David Davies/PA)

Williams said: “These big pots are hard to come back and keep having a crack at and the horse is no spring chicken, but although he had a fall last time, those things don’t seem to affect Coole Cody.

“With a lot of horses you’re always nervous after a fall, but when this horse falls on the floor he thinks it’s a bit of fun! He’s a very angry character who will go to war every day if he could.

“He’s just one of those rare breed of horses that’s very tough and very genuine and faces the music every time he comes to a big gig. It’s hard to put into words how tough a horse he is.”

He went on: “The track suits him and I went through the form of the race – and unless I was missing something, I couldn’t see why our horse was 12-1 and the horse that won the Paddy Power was the price he was.

“He’s won a Paddy Power and he’s won this. If he never wins another race in his life, he’s a 10-year-old who has done nothing but try and help us every time he goes to a racecourse.

“These big ones are sweet, especially with the history of these races. I was brought up watching them and remember all those brilliant horses winning them.

“To be in the same context as them means an awful lot.”

Shadow chasing Cheltenham double for Sue Smith

Midnight Shadow is reported to be in fine shape as he goes for a rare double by winning the Racing Post Gold Cup at Cheltenham on Saturday.

The Sue Smith-trained eight-year-old overcame a mistake at the final fence to lift the Paddy Power Gold Cup by three-quarters of a length from Protektorat, who has since franked the form with a facile triumph in the Many Clouds Chase at Aintree.

Midnight Shadow has to defy a 7lb rise in the ratings for his victory that will not make life easy in his bid to win a second prestigious handicap chase at the home of jump racing and achieve a feat last accomplished by Exotic Dancer in 2006.

“He’s in good form to go there and hopefully he’ll run a very good race,” said Smith.

“It would be marvellous if he could win it but it’s a different race, different day. He loves it round there so we’re really hoping for a very big run from him.”

Paul Nicholls is hoping a pair of cheekpieces can give Lalor an extra boost following a promising effort in the Paddy Power.

The nine-year-old ran his best race for some time when third behind Midnight Shadow on what was his first run since his move from Kayley Woollacott’s stable.

“He ran a race full of promise on his debut for us in the Paddy Power Gold Cup, staying on strongly to finish third just behind Protektorat, who franked the form with an impressive win at Aintree on Saturday,” Nicholls told Betfair.

Lalor  bids to build on his promising first run for Paul Nicholls
Lalor bids to build on his promising first run for Paul Nicholls (David Davies/PA)

“He hadn’t finished a race for 22 months, so to run like that after loads of problems was really encouraging. He seems to have come on since then and schooled great on Thursday morning.

“One of Lalor’s best runs came at Cheltenham in cheekpieces on New Year’s day 2020, so I’m putting them on again to sharpen him up a little bit because Harry Cobden felt he raced a touch lazily.”

Coole Cody came down at the second-last when still going well in front in the Paddy Power.

He had won that race last year and his trainer Evan Williams is hoping the 10-year-old can bounce back.

“He ran a great race last time, a smashing race. It’s always difficult when you’ve had a fall to come back to another big race, but he’s a tough old genuine boy and it’s fingers crossed he’ll go well again,” said Williams.

“There’s a big difference in the two courses at Cheltenham. And there is no doubt his best form is on the other track. It’s a big pot so let’s give it a go.”

Alan King feels Deyrann De Carjac has come on for his comeback after five months off when when not disgraced in ninth place in the Paddy Power.

Silver Hallmark's chances would be improved by rain
Silver Hallmark’s chances would be improved by rain (David Davies/PA)

“He was only beaten nine lengths in the Paddy Power Gold Cup at the November meeting, a race which will have sharpened him up,” the Barbury Castle trainer told www.alankingracing.co.uk.

“Deyrann de Carjac was staying on all the way up the run-in, having been forced to go flat to the boards from the off. He jumped well, having been short of match practice, and I think he’ll build on that run with a race behind him.”

Fergal O’Brien would like to see some rain fall ahead of the race to boost Silver Hallmark’s prospects. The seven-year-old shaped well on his first start for nine months when fourth to Fiddlerontheroof at Carlisle six weeks ago.

“Hopefully we’ll get a bit more rain and it’s fingers crossed. He just needs a bit more rain and a bit of luck and all the rest of it,” said O’Brien.

“It turned out a nice race at Carlisle. If we get the rain, we’d be hopeful of a good run.”

Dashel Drasher team hoping for Cheltenham rain

Dashel Drasher could bid to defy top weight in the Racing Post Gold Cup at Cheltenham on Saturday as long there is enough cut in the ground.

Connections of the Jeremy Scott-trained eight-year-old are keen to have a go at the valuable handicap chase if conditions are suitable.

Scott reports his stable star to have taken his seasonal reappearance at Ascot, where he was third to Lostintranslation, in his stride.

“If we get enough rain and the ground is good to soft or soft, I think the owners will be quite keen to run as it ties in possibly with the Silviniaco Conti Chase (at Kempton) later on in January,” said Scott.

“It gives a nice time gap, but we’ll very much see what the weather does.

“He seems to have come out of his race really well. All’s good.”

A field of 21 remain at the five-day confirmation stage including ante-post favourite Lalor.

The nine-year-old, trained by Paul Nicholls, heads the market thanks to his fine effort when taking third place behind Midnight Shadow in the Paddy Power Gold Cup at the Prestbury Park venue last month.

That was his first start since he moved to Ditcheat from Kayley Woollacott’s Crewkerne yard.

Midnight Shadow could bid to double up for trainer Sue Smith. Others from that race include Philip Hobbs’ Dostal Phil, who was fourth, and the Evan Williams-trained Coole Cody. He came down at the second-last fence when holding every chance.

Nicky Henderson’s Fusil Raffles could try to back up his fortunate success in the Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby when he capitalised on the fall of Shan Blue. However, he also holds an entry in the Unibet International Hurdle on the same card.

Dan Skelton is four-handed with Amoola Gold, Alnadam, Knight In Dubai and Beakstown while the Emmet Mullins-trained Noble Yeats in the sole Irish entry.