French Flavour For Gold Cup Fortune
Royal Ascot Gold Cup
All the ingredients are in place for a vintage Ascot Gold Cup on Thursday (4.20), where Dermot Weld will look to get his hands on the cup for a second time via Forgotten Rules (2/1).
Weld Plots Second Gold Cup Victory
Having won the cup with Rite Of Passage in 2010, Weld knows what it takes to land this historic staying event, and looks to have the right sort in this improving 5yo. Unbeaten in four outings, Forgotten Rules showed he had the class for this when winning a Group 2 over 2m here in October (heavy), before landing a Group 3 on his reappearance at Navan (1m6f, good).
Everything looks in place for a big run on Thursday, although Forgotten Rules does still have to prove he stays the extra half-a-mile, while firm ground wouldn’t be ideal. Off a mark of 116, however, he has the class judged on past Gold Cups…
Of the last 10 Gold Cup winners…
10 avoided Group 2 company last time
9 returned 8/1 or shorter
9 were officially rated 116+ or 0 (non British)
9 were British or Irish-bred
9 won during last three runs – others were 1-50
8 had a 31-day or longer rest period
A O’Brien won it six times
Mizzou Back At Ascot
Those who avoided Group 2 races last time hold a good record in this race, which points up Luca Cumani’s, Mizzou (4/1).
This improving 4yo colt is 4-6 in his short career to date, including a 2l victory in April’s Group 3 Sagaro Stakes here (2m, good to firm). That career best topped any of his three handicap wins last term, and the form was boosted when Vent De Force (7/1), who was 2l behind at Ascot, came out to land a Group 3 at Sandown (beating Trip To Paris almost 2l).
A French Success?
Another at the right end of the market is the French 5yo, Bathyron (10/1), 1 Group 3 winner last season over 2m, before narrowly going down in the Group 1 Prix du Cadran (2m4f, good).
Bathyron was back on the winning trail last month in a Group 2 at Longchamp (2m) and is without doubt one who could upset the protagonists.
With Aidan O’Brien winning six of the last 10 Gold Cups, his Kingfisher cannot be ignored at 12/1, especially as he won a reliable trial in the Saval Beg Stakes at Leopardstown earlier this month (1m6f, good to firm). Having been beaten just over 2l by Australia in last year’s Irish Derby, he has the ability for this grade.
Another cracking Gold Cup in store, and one in which the French raider, Bathyron, has an excellent profile, having already proved himself over this trip, ground and arrives in form. At 10/1, he is good each-way value.