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Why does a Cheltenham Gold Cup win ruin a horse?


In recent years there have been a few different winners of the Cheltenham Gold cup and most have struggled to win races after that. What is it that takes so much out of them and will we see it again with Bob’s Worth?

Just looking at some recent winners

Long Run – 6 yo when winning

Before winning the gold cup  it had run 8 times and won 6 including the King George post its Gold Cup win it has run a further 11 times winning just a poor 5 runner Denman chase and probably the poorest King George in recent times. It is still only 8 so certainly has not passed its peak.

Denman – 8yo when winning 

The tank was my favourite but the same happened. It lost just 1 of 14 races prior to its gold cup win, including the Lexus, RSA, Hennessey. After its Gold Cup win over Kauto Star, it won just 1 of 11 races which was the Hennessey. It was only 8 when it won the Gold Cup so had years left in it as well.

Imperial Commander – 9yo when winning

This was not a prolific winner prior to the Gold Cup with just 6 wins but its decline afterwards was marked. Yes it did have a lay off with injury but post the Gold Cup win it ran a further 6 times finishing just twice, with a sole win in the Betfair chase.

Synchronised – 9yo when winning

Obviously there is nothing to be gained from this with an ill fated outing in the National following its Gold Cup win.

War of Attrition – 7yo when winning

Won in 2006 but only won 5 of 18 after winning the Gold Cup. It won the Punchestown Gold Cup a month later in Ireland but after that win, it won just a listed and a grade 3 Chase seeing its rating drop 20 points before taking up hurdling again.



I won’t go back further and there is the great Kauto Star that blows all this out of the water, however with Bobs Worth  (8yo when winning) about to get into some serious racing with the Lexus today and favourite for it despite its 6th lto I thought it worth pointing out how these horses decline and how poor the value is in some of their races.


About Author

Hi I am 42 and have been sports betting seriously for the last 4-5 years. My main areas are Rugby Union where I have played a decent level in both England and Wales and also Cricket where I did the same. I like my horses too but really limit myself to the sprints up to a mile in the summer and then the longer distances over fences in the winter with some AW action as well in the colder months.

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