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Bet365 Gold Cup Betting Preview Part Two


David Pipe will be saddling the ten-year-old Faasel for this one and he looks to be a genuine live mount for this one. He's actually got a solid run over the Sandown surface before and he enters off some decent improvement in the Kim Muir at Cheltenham when he finished second to Junior when sent off at 20/1. His second place finish at Cheltenham the previous year, to this year's National winner Ballabriggs, looks even better now. He was 20/1 again on the day. Look for him to track the leaders and attempt to go up a gear on the run-in. His price is already starting to drop with some bookies listing him at 16s and others as high as 33/1.

Faasel is definitely an honest performer and he looks to be in the process of taking enough money to result in more than one price drop. He's a solid each-way selection with his tendency to finish second and, for those of you backing Baby Run, you may opt to position him in the bottom slot on your forecast ticket.

Eoin Griffin's The Last Derby, a half-brother to the living-legend Goldikova, is taking a fair amount of betting volume as well with several bookies shortening him to 16s from 33s. He is unraced in 2011 and his last victory was in July of 2010 in a hurdle contest at Cork. I think he's really going to have to run a blinder and likely produce the race of his life is he's going to be able to get a result against higher-quality staying company. 16/1 looks a bit too short for me on a contender that struggles to find the line.

Jonjo O'Neill will be saddling Can't Buy Time and he had a National to forget when he fell at the 18th fence when he was a fair portion off the pace. He's been running against some decent company over the past year or two and that's why you can justify his relative lack of results. He hasn't scored since taking a contest at Cheltenham back in January of 2010. Things had looked promising in the Kim Muir until he was pulled up with two left to jump. He has struggled to finish races but his last score came against solid company like Razor Royale and Tatenen. He can be backed as low as 12/1 and as high as 20/1. I think he's one to stay off though a place-only bet at a decent price might be worth a shout if you reckon luck could be on his side this time.

Iconoclast is bound to take some money and it will be especially interesting to see where his price goes in the final 30 minutes before the off. I reckon he's one of the best win-only selections on the card though he isn't exactly a clear-cut one. A recent 3m victory where he bested The Sawyer adds credibility to his claims and, in a race like this, you want to back a contender who is winning on a semi-consistent basis. He is looking for his third score on the bounce and, though he relatively lightly-raced, the fact remains that he's won four of his last six. Several popular bookmakers continue to offer him up at 16/1 with a few taking him down into 12s. At 20/1 he would be a supremely strong each-way selection but you reckon he might be able to do some business at 16/1 for each-way punters. If he picks up momentum in the markets, look for him below 10/1 on the day.

Overall, the Bet365 Gold Cup looks to be a rather exciting contest to keep us all busy as we get ready for Punchestown the following week. There is a fair amount of high-class action spread throughout the day's card at Sandown but this one represents one of the better striking opportunities on the day. 5/1 isn't a terrible price on Baby Run but you just have to wonder whether he's a tired horse or not – it's a big ask for him to run another staying contest so quickly but he is a gutsy contender. The step up in quality might be what does him in so I wouldn't exactly stack the mortgage money on him. Iconoclast is an in-form selection who could be poised to keep his good run of form going at a relatively solid price. Give him a look if he stays at double-digits. Faasel looks a there-or-thereabouts type and is a better forecast selection or place-only wager while West End Rocker could be the real spoiler if he manages to stay on his feet.