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Mate Expected To Be The Best In #GoldCupGOAT Group Of Death

Wednesday 8th March 2017
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Things get serious today in our #GoldCupGOAT Tournament with Group C taking centre stage. Already christened the Group of Death, we have four genuine contenders and only two spots available in the semi-finals, which means we are going to have two unlucky losers.

We have taken a closer look at the the Group and each of the contenders, which should help you make your selection.

Golden Miller

Golden Miller is quite simply a National Hunt legend with his five wins in the Cheltenham Gold Cup putting him well out on his own. It's a remarkable achievment for a horse to win the race once, so the fact he managed to do it five times on the spin, should see him go to the latter stages of the GoldCupGOAT tournament.

In 1934, Golden Miller won the Grand National and the Gold Cup in the same season which is a stunning achievement in any year.

It is of course difficult to know what Golden Miller beat in those races given it was so long ago, but the fact that he managed to stay sound and win in each of those five years is one of the great records in equine sport.

Golden Miller won five Gold Cups on the bounce
Golden Miller won five Gold Cups on the bounce

Best Mate

Next, we move onto Best Mate and it is hard to imagine him not winning Group B

Trained by Henrietta Knight, "Mate" won the Gold cup on three successive occasions between 2002-2004 and as a result he is one of the most revered horses of the 21st century.

He was favourite for the 2001 Arkle when the Festival was called off, whilst he also added the King George in 2002, to further boost his CV. It was his exploits at Cheltenham that really did catch the eye though, and he is firmly in the hearts of racing fans across the world.

Is Best Mate The Greatest Gold Cup horse ever?
Is Best Mate The Greatest Gold Cup horse ever?

Long Run

Long Run may have only won the Cheltenham Gold Cup once but his success in 2011 was one of the greatest of all time.

Just a 6YO at the time, Long Run took on, and beat, three previous winners of the famous race to write his name into the record books. The picture of Long Run, Denman and Kauto Star jumping the last together is one of the great sporting moments in recent memory.

Long Run had the age and form to hold off the two legends up the hill and claim a famous win, whilst Imperial Commander was also pulled up that day. Long Run also won two King George's during his career, but it is that famous day in 2011 that lives longest in the memory.

Kicking King

The underdog in Group C, Kicking King has a tough task to progress through to the semi-finals but he is sure to have his supporters.

Trained by Tom Taaffe, Kicking King had his most famous moment in 2005 when he claimed the Gold Cup in fantastic circumstances, and at the time he was a truly excellent horse.

Placed in a Supreme and an Arkle, Kicking King also won the King George twice during his career and he was the star of the National Hunt game in the wake of the death of Best Mate.

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