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2012 Cheltenham Day Four Tips and Preview: Cheltenham Gold Cup


This is it! The big one for the 2012 Cheltenham Festival sees the third iteration of a fascinating season-long battle between Long Run and living legend Kauto Star. The pride of Paul Nicholls yard will be buoyed by the victory of stablemate Big Buck's today after a relatively disappointing few days for Paul Nicholls yard. They hadn't come into the festival with a huge amount of form but a good performance from Kauto Star could turn it all around.

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The big news coming into the festival was that Kauto Star may not even run at all after taking a bad fall in schooling for this race. What happened afterwards seemed quite convenient that Kauto improved so rapidly and so dramatically despite only being considered 50/50.

One has to wonder whether Clive and Paul were darkening Kauto up for a betting score as he drifted up to 8/1 in the ante post market a week or two before the kick-off of the festival. Either way, you can expect Kauto Star to be in very strong shape as the yard has so much respect for him they wouldn't risk him if they thought there was any way things could go sour.

We've seen Kauto Star come up short in the gold cup in the last two attempts with his falling performance against Imperial Commander followed up by a third place finish to Denman and Long Run – who made serious headlines as the usurper to Kauto's crown.

Kauto Star has been bet down towards 7/2 at the moment with Long Run continuing to do brisk business at a 2/1 listing that has drifted up from his standard 5/4 on the ante post markets for much of the year. Kauto gave him the business twice this year with two legendary performances that saw him roll back the years and push on for his legions of fans.

It's going to be a very interesting race with Burton Port, the Midnight Chase and Synchronised all looking quality at around 7/1 to 10/1.


Look for Kauto to retain his crown with Long Run chasing him home all the way. If Ruby notices the pace is too slow – he's going to send Kauto to the front. He learned a lesson on Hurricane Fly.  

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