Synchronised takes home the Gold Cup
The Cheltenham Gold Cup was claimed by Synchronized with jockey Tony McCoy, while Giant Bolster and Long Run came in second and third as two time winner Kauto Star preliminarily exited from the race with thirteen fences still left to go.
After the win an exhilarated McCoy said: “He’s an amazing horse and it was an amazing performance. He’s really delivered.” This is McCoy’s second Gold Cup.
Jonjo O’Neill who trained Synchronized was also exalted at the win. With his first Gold Cup as a trainer, he said “A lot of work has gone into him at home so it was a great team effort from the yard. He only came right in the last 10 days or so and we weren’t really confident.”
The race did see its share of disappointments as What A Friend took a fall at the second fence. This was followed by Kauto Star’s untimely exit as Ruby Walsh expressed dissatisfaction with his horse and pulled him up with thirteen still to go.
The race took off with Midnight Chase at the lead who was quickly overtaken by Time For Rupert but as the race drew to its end it looked like Giant Bolster would take the trophy home.
Long Run also figured among the list of possible winners but failed to make it. Another strong contender was Burton Port. Trainer Nicky Henderson who trained the third placed Long Run and the fourth in line Burton Port said “I’m thrilled with my two boys and I have to give credit to the winners.”
Kauto Star’s owner, Clive Smith acknowledged that the time had come to retire Kauto Star, giving it a 90% chance. He said: “What a great career he’s had and he’s been a wonderful horse. I would say it’s 90% certain that he’ll be retired. Someone will have to come up with a very good reason for me not to retire him.”
Accroding to Ladbrokes Horse Racing, Kauto Star’s almost didn’t make it to the race after a schooling fall just a couple of weeks before the race. Trainer Paul Nicholls who endorsed Walsh’s decision saying “Ruby wasn’t happy after he’d jumped a couple of fences and we said if he wasn’t happy to pull him up, and he’s done the right thing,” said Nicholls though he states that the horse is doing fine.