Can Long Run join an elusive club to win both the Grand National and Cheltenham Gold Cup?
Seventy years have passed since the great Golden Miller achieved the most elusive of equine feats by winning both the Grand National and the Cheltenham Gold Cup in the same year.
By the 1934 Grand National Golden Miller had already claimed three Gold Cups and was still due to take the 1935 and 1936 renewals.
L’Escargot took the National in 1975 after having won the Gold Cup in 1970 and 1971. Horses have tried and failed since to do the great double with the last to be the ill fated Synchronised in 2012.
This year the 2011 Gold Cup victor will look to end the Long Run of failures by winning the world’s most famous steeplechase. Henderson’s nine-year-old has been placed three times in the Gold Cup and has been reported as schooling well over National style fences in recent weeks. Disappointing this season connections chose to serve another attempt of Cheltenham Festival glory to head to the National instead.
With a confidence boosting win under Long Run’s belt last time out at Kelso, he heads to the race in good form. Priced with most firms as the third favourite his front running style could be well suited by the race. Jockey Sam Waley-Cohen is no newcomer to success over the National fences and his experience will be beneficial.
But can Long Run bridge the gap and win the Grand National? Long Run is no Golden Miller, but if he jumps well and takes to the course his price of 14/1 looks to be great each way value.
(Featured Photograph – Golden Miller – Creative Commons)