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2024 Punchestown Gold Cup Preview: Beware The Cheltenham Curse

The Punchestown Gold Cup is the feature race of the Punchestown Festival, and it is always a contest that can throw up some unexpected results, which included Fastorslow winning at 20/1 last year.

It’s hard to back up Cheltenham

Looking at previous trends, it is hard to complete the Cheltenham Gold Cup and Punchestown Gold Cup. The last horse to achieve that feat was Sizing John in 2017 for Jessica Harrington, so it’s been a while.

Of course, Galopin Des Champs is the most likely winner, and he is one of the best staying chasers we’ve seen this millennium, but he’s no value at the prices. Though his win in the Cheltenham Gold Cup was impressive, I do think he’s had some hard races this season, and that’s bound to have left its mark.

Punchestown is a home game for Fastorslow

When it comes to last year’s winner, Fastorslow, he has since proven that his win in this race was no fluke. He was able to get the better of Galopin Des Champs in the John Durkan Chase back in November, admittedly over a shorter trip. However, his campaign has been lighter this season, and it’s hard to tell how he would have finished in the Cheltenham Gold Cup after he unseated JJ Slevin halfway through the race. The eight-year-old gelding certainly likes it at Punchestown, and he looks to have a good chance of defending his crown.

It’s great to see Lucinda Russell sending Corach Rambler over the Irish Sea. Unfortunately, he didn’t get very far in the Grand National after he unseated Derek Fox at the first fence. On the other hand his third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup brings him right into it. We know he comes into his own in the spring, and he commands a lot of respect.

Hewick is overpriced

The one I like looking at the market is Hewick each-way. We obviously know a lot about him, and he’s been a great horse for Shark Hanlon. The last time saw him he finished down the field over hurdles at Aintree a couple of weeks ago, but I think he may have needed the run, and coming back over fences should suit. The son of Virtual wears first-time blinkers that might just help him concentrate, and the good ground should be in his favour. For me, he looks a little overpriced, and I can see him making the frame.

Capodanno loves Punchestown

Elsewhere, the only one that makes some sort of appeal is Capodanno. He might have had a hard race in the Grand National, but he’s got an excellent record at the Punchestown Festival, winning on two occasions and commands respect at a big price.

Whatever you’re backing I hope you enjoy the race and please remember to gamble responsibly!

Selections: Fastorslow 10/3 (Win) / Hewick 14/1 (Each Way)

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The Punchestown Gold Cup is the feature race of the Punchestown Festival, and it is always a contest that can throw up some unexpected results, which included Fastorslow winning at 20/1 last year.
Read also...