Venetia Williams takes aim at Gold Cup with L’Homme Press├®
It is set to be an excellent season ahead for the connections of LÔÇÖHomme Press├®┬á, as the Boodles Cheltenham Gold Cup will be his target at the end of the campaign. The 2022 Brown Advisory NovicesÔÇÖ Chase winner has shown he has the class to win big races at the Cheltenham Festival.
The seven-year-old went into the Cheltenham Festival earlier this year with an unbeaten record over fences, and he kept up his perfect start to his chase career with an impressive performance to land the Grade One contest over 3m┬¢f.
Venetia WilliamsÔÇÖ runner is 12/1 in the┬ábet on horse racing online for the 2023 Cheltenham Gold Cup, which suggests he is one of the leading British contenders for the blue riband prize in the sport.┬á
As the┬áhorse race results┬áshow, the chaser does need to bounce back from a disappointing effort at Aintree last time out. He lost his 100% record in the Mildmay NovicesÔÇÖ Chase, as he could only finish third of four runners at the Grand National Meeting. However, that defeat should not deflect from what was an excellent campaign for the novice chaser.
Williams bidding for first Gold Cup win
Local Herefordshire trainer Williams has won some of the biggest races in National Hunt Racing, but she has yet to get her hands on the Gold Cup trophy. Her biggest win so far was her success in the 2009 Grand National with Mon Mome, although she is no stranger to Festival success with handicappers.┬á
If LÔÇÖHomme Press├® did go on to win the Gold Cup in 2023, the achievement would be on par with what she achieved in the worldÔÇÖs most famous steeplechase 13 years ago. At the time, she became just the second female trainer to win the Aintree feature after Jenny Pitman.
Teeton Mill has also given Williams a lot of success at the highest level in the sport. The chaser won the Hennessy Gold Cup, King George VI Chase and Ascot Chase in the same season in the 1998/99 campaign.
Rivals to L’Homme Press├® include Galopin Des Champs
WilliamsÔÇÖ chaser is set to embark on his first campaign outside novice company and he will face strong competition at Cheltenham. One of them is Galopin Des Champs from Willie MullinsÔÇÖ yard, a winner of two Grade I races last season.
The six-year-old from Ireland tops the betting for the 2023 Cheltenham Gold Cup. MullinsÔÇÖ chaser looked set for a comfortable success in the Turners NovicesÔÇÖ Chase last March, but he came down at the final obstacle, gifting the race to Bob Olinger.
On his last start of the campaign, Galopin Des Champs showed his class at Fairyhouse, prevailing by 18 lengths in the┬áGrade One contest. He is set to be even stronger next March with another season under him.
A Plus Tard will also┬ádefend his crown in the feature race of the Festival in 2023. Henry de BromheadÔÇÖs runner finished second in the contest in 2021 but went one place better 12 months later.
The eight-year-old now has an official rating of 180, as he has consistently been one of the best 3m chasers in the UK and Ireland over the last three years.
Expect to see LÔÇÖHomme Press├® and the other leading contenders for the 2023 Cheltenham Gold Cup make their seasonal reappearances when the weather eases in October or November.