Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Record Gold Cup Entry as Stars Drop Out

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Record Gold Cup Entry as Stars Drop Out

Article excerpt

Byline: GRAHAM CUNNINGHAM

NEVER mind the quality, feel the width. Cheltenham officials were keen to accentuate the positive as they published a record entry for the totesport Gold Cup today, but the absence of Best Mate, Kicking King and Trabolgan leaves the cast list for the Festival showpiece on 17 March looking distinctly short of proven star performers.

Fortunately, the 64-strong entry, which is 15 more than the previous record, featured no further shock absentees. Beef Or Salmon and Kingscliff continue to head the market, but Tom Scudamore argued that Monkerhostin "has a favourite's chance" today as he reflected on his agonising defeat by Kicking King in the King George.

Scudamore was hugely impressed with the way the Philip Hobbs-trained gelding rallied to get within a neck of the winner. He said: "He's a very high quality horse who loves Cheltenham and, with the way they are dropping out, I don't see any reason why he can't win a Gold Cup. …

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