Ante Post Gold Cup favourite Sir Des Champs is being prepared to start his season at Punchestown at the beginning of December. The John Durkan Memorial Chase has been nominated as the ideal start by trainer Willie Mullins with the Gigginstown horse being aimed towards a third successive win at the Cheltenham Festival. Sir Des Champs was the winner of the Conditional Jockeys Hurdle in 2011 before returning last season to win the Jewson Novices Chase which marked him out as a potential Gold Cup horse in 2013. All eyes will be on Punchestown when Sir Des Champs returns to the track at the start of December with the Gold Cup market looking wide open at this early stage of the season. A good run and win for the Mullins horse on his first start will see him consolidate his position as ante-post favourite for the biggest race of the season in March.
Currently we are seeing a number of horses towards the head of the Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting with punters and bookmakers still guessing as to which horse will success the ill fated Synchronised. Sir Des Champs is the slight favourite at this stage due to his success at Cheltenham over the past two years but this will be a major step up in class this season for the Gigginstown horse. One horse punters must be careful not to ignore in the Gold Cup market is Long Run who of course famously won the race in 2011. The Nicky Henderson horse is still only seven years old and although he was below his best last season he is proven at this level and that could count for plenty when push comes to shove at the Festival in March. Nicky Henderson will also be hoping that Bobs Worth makes up into a Gold Cup contender this season after his win in the Albert Bartlett at the Festival and he is another one to keep an eye on this winter. At the moment thought it is Sir Des Champs who is the market leader and his seasonal debut at Punchestown is likely to be one of the most important races of the Cheltenham build up.