Long Run unchanged for Cheltenham Gold Cup after King George win
Long Run is unmoved at 7/1 to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup after getting up in the dying strides to win the King George for the second time at Kempton.
Sam Waley-Cohen looked to have the race won three flights from home, but found himself in trouble jumping the last as Captain Chris had battled through to take the initiative.
However, Long Run was the definite stayer and he needed every ounce of stamina to get his nose in front at the line to triumph by a neck.
This bodes well for Cheltenham given the Gold Cup is run over 3m2f compared to the King George over 3m.
The big comment made by trainer Nicky Henderson afterwards was that he was looking forward to seeing the horse back on better ground, possibly in the Denman Chase at Newbury next.
This is interesting given that stamina now seems the area where Long Run has the advantage over the opposition, rather than jumping quality or speed.
This would indicate that similar conditions to Kempton at Cheltenham would present Long Run with the best chance of victory.
The boggy ground seemed to push the stamina of both Grands Crus and Cue Card, who were looking serious challengers for a long period until running out of puff.
Furthermore, The Giant Bolster ran too badly to be true and should be more like his old self on a faster surface.
Although the King George is typically the biggest prep race for the Cheltenham Gold Cup each season, that latest contest has not had a major impact on the betting.
Six of the top seven in the Cheltenham Gold Cup betting did not compete in the King George, with Hennessy Gold Cup winner Bobs Worth and Irish raider Flemenstar at the head of affairs at 4/1.
Sir Des Champs and Silviniaco Conti are level with Long Run at 7/1, with First Lieutenant 14/1 and Last Instalment 16/1.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.