The Cheltenham Gold Cup 2013 came to a thrilling climax, as the 11-4 bookies’ favourite, Bobs Worth romped home 7 lengths ahead of the field to give trainer Nicky Henderson a truly memorable victory. Jockey Barry Geraghty brought home the newly crowned Gold Cup winner with room to spare, in front of Sir Des Champs in 2nd and Long Run in Third.
Speaking to the BBC after the race, Geraghty enthused:
“It was brilliant. He’s such a great little horse, who loves the Job. We had faith in the horse. Nicky Henderson knew he would have him fit enough – he knows how to get them ready for Cheltenham”.
The going was soft and good-to-soft in places and coming to the 2nd fence from home, it wasn’t clear who was going to take the prize, as Sir Des Champs, ridden by Champion jockey A P McCoy, and amateur Sam Waley-Cohen on 2011 Gold Cup winner, Long Run were neck and neck, with Geraghty tucked in behind.
It was Bobs Worth though, one of 9 who started the race, who rallied and hit the front after the last fence and struck for home, leaving the others behind for a win that brought up a 50th Festival win for Lambourn trainer, Henderson.
A beaming Nicky Henderson recalled:
“It has been a long old week. Both boys gave them great rides and both horses were brave to the line. It is a dream, isn’t it? Barry Geraghty gave that a lovely pace. He is such an honest horse. He always gallops up the hill”.
Despite riding the winner of the Albert Bartlett Hurdle, the race directly before the Gold Cup on At Fishers Cross, McCoy was downbeat after coming in 2nd:
“It’s hard to be happy on a day like today”.
McCoy, a late draft in for Sir Des Champs, a Willie Mullins trained mount, looked to be in pole position as he jockeyed for position in a real pro versus amateur tussle against Waley-Cohen. Neither however, would prove to be the winner, as Bobs Worth charged up hill, passing them both.
“A New Era for Steeplechasing”
Nicky Henderson went on to extol the virtues of current and burgeoning steeplechasing talent:
“The Gold Cup has engendered a real feeling of a new era for steeplechasing. There is masses of talented youth at the top of the tree, perhaps yet to reach their peak. The first two home, Bobs Worth and Sir Des Champs, are the most significant, having been the top novice chasers at the 2012 Festival, and now they have neatly progressed”.
It was Bobs Worth who ultimately won out though, to delight owners “The Not Afraid Partnership” and breeder, Mrs L Eadie and take the prestigious Cheltenham Gold Cup and the £313,225 in prize money.