Run and Bob top Gold entries

by Michelle Fortune , 09 January 2013

There are 40 horses entered for this year's Befred Cheltenham Gold Cup, headed by 2011 winner Long Run.

Nicky Henderson is responsible for five of the 40 entries with Long Run joined by ante-post favourite Bobs Worth, winner of this year's Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury.

Last season's Queen Mother Champion Chase winner Finian's Rainbow could step up in distance, while Ryanair Chase hero Riverside Theatre is another possible for the master of Seven Barrows. His entries are completed by Roberto Goldback.

Paul Nicholls no long has Kauto Star and Denman to rely on but the champion trainer has a strong hand with Betfair Chase winner Silviniaco Conti and Lexus Chase scorer Tidal Bay among his four entries.

Kauto Stone and What A Friend could also take their chance for the Ditcheat handler.

Former winner Imperial Commander could return to Prestbury Park for Nigel Twiston-Davies, while other notable entries include Calgary Bay, Champion Court and Hunt Ball.

War Of Attrition was the last Irish-trained winner of the Gold Cup but the travelling party looked to have a big chance of taking the price this year with 12 entries from Ireland.

Sir Des Champs won the Jewson Novices' Chase at last year's Festival and Willie Mullins' charge remains the general second favourite for the blue riband.

Mullins also has Quel Esprit and Prince De Beauchene, while Peter Casey could send over Flemenstar if he impresses the training in the Hennessy Gold Cup at Leopardstown next month.

Mouse Morris has entered First Lieutenant, China Rock with Tony Martin responsible for Bog Warrior. Other interesting entries from Ireland include Henry De Bromhead's Sizing Europe, the Gordon Elliott-trained Jessies Dream and Joncol from Paul Nolan's yard.

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