Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 December 2014

Cheltenham pair in line for rematch

Long Run (orange and brown silks) and Sir Des Champs (maroon silks)
Long Run (orange and brown silks) and Sir Des Champs (maroon silks)

Sir Des Champs and Long Run, second and third respectively in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, are on course to clash in TheTote.com Punchestown Gold Cup on Wednesday.

The Willie Mullins-trained Sir Des Champs was beaten seven lengths by Bobs Worth last month, with the winner's stablemate Long run a further two and three-quarter lengths back in third.

Long Run's trainer Nicky Henderson has also left in Riverside Theatre, with Paul Nicholls responsible for Kauto Stone, a Grade One winner at Downpatrick in November.

Disappointing in two runs since then, Kauto Stone accounted for First Lieutenant in that win and could meet the Mouse Morris-trained horse again.

Morris' eight-year-old is coming off the back of victory over Menorah in the Betfred Bowl at Aintree, having previously been second in the Ryanair Chase at Cheltenham.

Like Sir Des Champs, he is owned by Gigginstown House Stud, who can also call on the Colm Murphy-trained Quito De La Roque.

Sizing Europe also has the option of this three-mile-one-furlong event in addition to the two-mile Boylesports.com Champion Chase on Tuesday.

John Smith's Grand National third Teaforthree has been left in by Rebecca Curtis, with Chicago Grey, who was pulled up at Aintree having been well fancied, a possible starter for Gordon Elliott.

Ted Walsh's Seabass, 13th in the National having been third the year before, is another still entered.

Captain Chris, Pandorama, Noble Prince and Whodoyouthink complete the line-up.

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