This may be a bold claim, but were it not for injury then Invictus would have been among those pitching for victory in the last instalment of the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
After all, the last time Invictus was seen on the racecourse, he was finishing ahead of Gold Cup winner Bobs Worth and fellow favourite Silviniaco Conti in the Reynoldstown Novices’ Chase at Ascot.
This contest was back in February 2012 and his two conquests have gone on to have established chase careers since, when stepping up from novice to senior company.
Bobs Worth is now rated 181 and Silviniaco Conti 173, which gives some indication as to how well-in at the weights Invictus could be in the Hennessy Gold Cup off a mark of 145.
Granted, the Hennessy will be his first start for the best part of two years, but even without improvement, he was running off 150 when winning the Reynoldstown.
Meanwhile, in his race after the Reynoldstown, Bobs Worth was deemed to have run to a rating of 160 when landing the RSA Chase at Cheltenham.
So using this as a better guide, Invictus could have 15lb in hand at Newbury, which indicates that he is more than backable as the 8/1 favourite in the Hennessy betting.
What’s more, he is the optimum age to win the Hennessy, as four of the last six victors have been seven-year-olds, while all of the last eight winners have been rated at least 145.
Invictus is certainly open to improvement, having only had four chase starts in his career, with three of these ending in victory.
He fits numerous other trends for the race too, having won at least half of his chase starts, having triumphed in a race that was of at least Class 2 standard and having finished in the first three on his last appearance.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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