The highlight of Newbury’s three day winter meeting climaxes on Saturday where eighteen will head to post for the Hennessy Gold Cup (Handicap Grade 3) which is run over an extended 3m 2f. In what has always been seen as one of the most competitive handicaps of the entire NH season this year’s line up certainly does not disappoint.
Champion trainer Paul Nicholls runs three in total here, with likely favourite Aiteen Thirtythree (11/2 most firms) and the lightly raced Michel Le Bon (8/1 Boylesports) his more likely sorts, preference is for the latter who has not been seen on a racecourse for two years but finds himself on a nice racing weight and has reportedly been working very well at Ditcheat. However, both horses in mention are single price figures in the betting and it may just pay to take a chance on the Philip Hobbs trained Planet Of Sound. The nine-year old makes his seasonal debut here but has won first time out on two occasions.
The selection was limited to only two starts last year when behind Imperial Commander in the Betfair Chase at Haydock and Long Run in the King George VI at Kempton. Planet Of Sound clearly had his fair share of problems last year but if he can recapture his form of old he will surely go very close here, it is worth noting he has ran four time at this course resulting in three wins and a runner up spot. Stable jockey Richard Johnson takes the ride for Hobbs who last won the race ten years ago with What’s Up Boys. Planet Of Sound is best price 12/1 with William Hill.