Irish Gold Cup 2019 Betting and Odds Preview
The Gold Cup is one of the most prestigious National Hunt steeplechases in Irish horse racing and the leading trial for the Cheltenham Gold Cup, the premier National Hunt race in Ireland. The race is open to horses aged 5+ and was established in 1987. Run over 3 miles in Leopardstown south of Dublin, the Irish Gold Cup takes place at the beginning of each February (February 3 this year).
Named after one of Ireland’s most successful horse trainers Vincent O’Brien, the race was originally known as the Vincent O’Brien Irish Gold Cup. As we mentioned earlier, it was first run over 20 years ago in 1987. Just 4 years later it was renamed to Hennessy Gold Cup for sponsorship reasons when it was commonly known as the Hennessy Gold Cup. Hennessy’s sponsorship ended in 2015, with Unibet sponsoring the event in the past few years.
Legendary horses have run at the Irish Gold Cup over the years. Florida Pearl is still the most successful racehorse in the steeplechase’s history with 4 wins, 3 of them coming in successive years. Mark Walsh is the most successful jockey in the event with 4 wins, while Willie Mullins is the most successful trainer (9 wins).
Last year, 9-year old Edwulf won the Irish Gold Cup, bringing former jockey Joseph O’Brien his first victory in the race. The horse was ridden by Derek O’Connor who also won the Gold Cup for the first time in his career. This year, the Gold Cup odds favour an unlikely horse – Road to Respect. The Irish horse finished fourth in the Cheltenham Gold Cup last year and is aiming high for the Gold Cup and Cheltenham this year according to bookies.
However, the competition is tough – Road to Respect will have to outrun Al Boum Photo and Presenting Percy first before getting to the trophy.
Road to Respect Going for the Gold?
Experts and bookies fully expect Irish horse Road to Respect to win the Gold Cup this year. After finishing 4th in the Cheltenham Gold Cup last year, expectations are high for the horse this year. Bookies have made the 8-year old the main favourite for this year’s Irish Gold Cup, an opinion many experts share. The Noel Meade-trained chaser will surely try and win it all after not being able to win last year.
Ridden by Sean Flanagan, Meade’s retained jockey, Road to Respect is on the top of the favourite list at Fun88, Ole777, SportPesa, and BetVision with odds of 10/3. The 8-year old chaser is in front of Al Boum Photo and Presenting Percy, two of his “fiercest” rivals for the Irish Gold Cup.
Meade even considers his horse the main favourite for Cheltenham, and with those Gold Cup odds, we suggest he’s right. At 10/3 (or 3/1), Road to Respect is a great punter’s choice. If you place a bet on him and the horse goes through the finish line first, you’ll quadruple your stake and then some, reeling in a nice return.
Al Boum Photo or Presenting Percy – Who’s the Second Favourite?
Both Al Boum Photo and Presenting Percy are Road to Respect’s biggest challengers according to bookies. However, even if almost all agree on Al Boum Photo as the second favourite. The odds are quite close, though, so you might want to decide on your favourite before betting.
Al Boum Photo is the second favourite for the Gold Cup at SportPesa, Ole777, Fun88 and BetVision – all bookies are giving it odds of 5/1 to win the race. Presenting Percy’s odds at the other bookies are 11/2 (Ole777, BetVision, SportPesa, and Fun88). So, if you’re not that sure about Road to Respect and want to back another horse up, consider your options carefully.
When it comes to the odds, you’ll earn a nice sum if any of these two horses win the race, even for a small amount. It’s just a matter of finding the deal that works and deciding who might race through the finish line – the 7-year old Bay Gelding Al Boum Photo or 8-year old Presenting Percy.
Can Bellshill Win the Race?
The 8-year old Bellshill is trained by the legendary Willie Mullins. His owner, Graham Wylie hopes that Bellshill can surprise everyone and win the Gold Cup in front of the other favourites, which will be a sight to see. Bellshill won the Punchestown Gold Cup last year and will surely be looking to bring Mullins a record 10th win at the Gold Cup. With his experience, we believe that there’s a chance Bellshill can outrun the favourites.
At the moment, Bellshill is being given odds at bet365 (equal with Kemboy), while Fun88, Ole777, BetVision, and SportPesa are giving it 11/2 odds, just like Presenting Percy. As you can see, many horses apart from Road to Respect at the top are almost equal in terms of odds, meaning that we may be in for another exciting Irish Gold Cup.
Backing up Bellshill is the same as backing up Presenting Percy. With Willie Mullins training the horse, we suggest weighing your options carefully. The man’s an absolute legend when it comes to the Gold Cup, and his experience surely makes Bellshill a top contender.
Can In-Form Kemboy Win the Gold Cup?
After winning the Grade I Savills Chase at Leopardstown back in December, Kemboy has been on the lips of many experts as a potential Irish Gold Cup winner. The 6-year old is trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by David Mullins. There’s a genuine belief among horse racing experts that Kemboy might go in and surprise everyone with a win, and bookies surely agree, giving the horse similar odds to Bellshill and Presenting Percy.
Currently, Kemboy goes for 6/1 at SportPesa, BetVision, Fun88, and Ole777. This puts him level with Bellshill and close to the other favourites at other bookies. If Road to Respect has a bad day, you can bet that Kemboy will march forward. Being similarly placed as the other favourites apart from Road to Respect, bookies believe that the 6-year old can pass through the finish line first.
If that’s the case, you stand to win a pretty nice sum of money for a reasonable bet. If you ask us, a small bet on Kemboy is worth giving a try.