Paul Nicholls has to be pleased with the performance of his Neptune Collonges when he won the Irish Hennessey Gold Cup in fine style at Leopardstown on February 15th. He looked back to his best and comfortably held off the game challenge of Welsh Grand National winner, Notre Pere.
The win made amends for Neptune Collonge's fall at this course in December in the Lexus Chase and further strengthened his claim as a live Gold Cup prospect again; he was third behind stablemates, Denman nad Kauto Star last year. Whether or not he has improved enough to get the beter of the big two in the Gold Cup this time around is hard to tell but it looks like he will go to the Festival in perfect nick and with every chance.
His odds for the Gold Cup have been trimmed to around the 5-1 mark, with most bookmakers.