Gloucestershire trainer David Bridgwater aiming back-to-form The Giant Bolster at Cheltenham Gold Cup
DAVID Bridgwater says last year's runner-up The Giant Bolster is "bang on track" for another crack at the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup.
The seven-year-old bounced back from a disappointing run in the King George VI Chase at Kempton to finish runner-up under Tom Scudamore to Silviniaco Conti in the Betfair Chase over three miles at Newbury on Saturday.
The Giant Bolster enjoyed a relaxing day at Bridgwater's stable in Stow-on-the-Wold yesterday before the former top jockey, whose described his performance yesterday as "awesome", sets about getting him in peak form for the Gold Cup on March 15.
Bridgwater had been confident The Giant Bolster would produce a better performance than when he was pulled up by AP McCoy in the King George.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
He is now hoping a return to Prestbury Park, where The Giant Bolster has won twice, will help him turn the tables on Silviniaco Conti.
"The winner is obviously a very good horse," said Bridgwater.
"I think Cheltenham is a unique track, so hopefully the result might be slightly different.
"He's run a fantastic race, wonderful, and it puts us bang on track again and we're looking forward to March.
"Historically with this horse he's never particularly done well before Christmas – I don't know why – but since Kempton he's just been a different horse.
"He didn't run very well at all at Kempton – it was just a non-event – but I knew he'd bounce back from that."
Silviniaco Conti's rider Ruby Walsh expects further improvement from the gelding after he stretched his unbeaten run to four races.
He pulled away from The Giant Bolster after jumping the final fence to score by seven lengths.
Walsh said: "He did well for a horse short of full fitness on quite testing ground.
"If he improves as much from the Charlie Hall as he did to the Betfair Chase he will run a big race in the Gold Cup.
"He's a gem, he's got plenty of scope and there's lots to like about him."
Tom George will consider running Mail De Bievre over shorter distances after he finished fourth under Paddy Brennan.
Running for the first time in nearly 18 months, he faded in the home straight after making the running.
George said: "I'm very happy with him. He's very exuberant and Paddy said with hindsight we should have run him over two miles."
Mail De Bivre has two entries at the Festival, in the Gold Cup over three miles and a quarter and the Ryanair Chase over two miles and five furlongs.
George could also consider giving him a late entry in the Sportingbet.com Queen Mother Champion Chase over two miles.
Tickets for the Best Mate enclosure on Gold Cup day have sold out.