Hayley O’Connor marks your card for Gold Cup day at Punchestown
A morning bath and a torn copy of The Racing Post later and Ladbrokes' Hayley O'Connor is still a little tentative about nailing on her picks for Gold Cup day at Punchestown. It's a tough card, that's for sure.
There are a few things you see in the movies that you just shouldn't try at home. One of which I was unfortunate enough to give a go this morning and that is reading in the bath.
In my head, this was the ideal way of relaxing before a busy day, whilst catching up on the form with a copy of The Racing Post.
Sadly, that form guide now lies a torn damp mess on the floor of the bathroom and it wasn’t the gentle intro to the day I hoped it might be. But looking at today's card, I'm not sure that even if I had managed to keep The Post bubble bath-free whether it would be any use as it’s a really tough card.
The headline Gold Cup (17.30) is nigh on impossible to predict. Sizing Europe showed us all yesterday why we shouldn't be too quick to write off those who look slightly past their sell by date and it could be argued Long Run (main pic) fits into that category. He came second in this last year, during which his rider lost his whip but caught it again mid-air…
Argocat will surely improve and has become an exciting prospect for Tom Taaffe, who won this previously with Kicking King. Cheltenham Gold Cup runner-up On His Own is currently Billy no mates in the betting but that last race was a hard one and may have left its mark. If I was to side with something, it may be Lyreen Legend but I wouldn't be putting the house on it.
Beat That can outclass the rest in the 4.55 coming here off an Aintree Grade One success although Apache Jack could run to a place.
I'm struggling to decide if I'll back Cheltenian or Le Vent D'Antan in the 4.20 but I think, at least I think I think, that Philip Hobbs will clinch this with his charge as he's got a great raiding record here in Punchestown. Elsewhere, I will be backing King Vuvuzela in the 6.40
Some outside moves worth noting for those of you too cheap to punt more than a few shillings are: Mister Benedictine in the 3.40 as well as Memories Of Milan, Wounded Warrior in the 4.20, and Mitebeall ForLuck in the Guinness Handicap Chase.