O'Neill and Keighley plot double trouble
COUNTY trainers Jonjo O'Neill and Martin Keighley could both launch two-pronged attacks on one of the biggest races of the jumps season at Cheltenham.
O'Neill is eyeing the £160,000 Paddy Power Gold Cup on November 17, which he won six years ago with Exotic Dancer, for winning chasers Finger Onthe Pulse and Gilbarry.
Finger Onthe Pulse, who won at the 2008 Festival, has joined O'Neill's team at Jackdaws Castle from Tom Taaffe's yard in Ireland.
The nine-year-old gained the most recent of his nine wins in September last year and finished third at the Showcase meeting at Prestbury Park last month.
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Gilbarry has won four times, most recently at Ayr in April last year, but was well beaten at the Showcase meeting.
Keighley could run Champion Court, the star of his stable in Luckley, and Havingotascoobydo.
Champion Court, twice a winner at Cheltenham and runner-up at the Festival in March, is set to make his seasonal debut at Kempton on Monday.
A winning comeback would confirm his position as one of the leading contenders for the showpiece contest, the highlight of the three-day Open meeting which starts on November 16.
Havingotascoobydo has won five times and returned from injury to finish tenth at the Showcase meeting at Prestbury Park last month.
Kim Bailey has given an entry to his exciting young chaser Darna, one of the best horses at his stable in Andoversford.
The six-year-old suffered the first fall of his career at the Showcase meeting but won twice over fences last term.
The 44 entries for the Paddy Power Gold Cup are headed by Grands Crus, trained by David Pipe.
The 43 entries for the feature race on the final day of the Open, the Racing Post Hurdle, include O'Neill's It's A Gimme, Olofi from Tom George's stable in Slad and Grey Soldier trained by Sophie Leech in Elton, near Cinderford.
Darlan, trained by Nicky Henderson, is the early favourite.
PADDY POWER GOLD CUP entries: Aerial, Al Ferof, Calgary Bay, Casey Top, Champion Court, Criqtonic, Cristal Bonus, Darna, Divers, Edgardo Sol, Finger Onthe Pulse, For Non Stop, Forpadydeplasterer, Fosters Cross, Ghizao, Gilbarry, Giorgio Quercus, Grands Crus, Havingotascoobydo, Hunt Ball, Jamsie Hall, Kalellshan, Kingsmere, Menorah, Micheal Flips, Nadiya De La Vega, Notus De La Tour, Ordinary Man, Pepite Rose, Poquelin, Quantitativeeasing, Questions Answered, Solix, Tanks For That, Tartak, The Disengager, The Knoxs, Time For Rupert, Tiptoeaway, Torphichen, Triolo D'alene, Vino Griego, Walkon, Wishfull Thinking.
RACING POST HURDLE ENTRIES: Fufakula, Alasi, Albert Hall, Blue Bajan, Bothy, Cash And Go, Cause Of Causes, Changing The Guard, Conquisto, Constant Contact, Cotton Mill, Dark Lover, Darlan, Desert Cry, Dodging Bullets, Domination, Edgardo Sol, Glam Gerry, Grey Soldier, Hi Dancer, Hinterland, Hunters Belt, Ile De Re, It's A Gimme, Kazlian, King Of Queens, Lexi's Boy, Maller Tree, Moon Dice, Olofi, One Cool Shabra, Prospect Wells, Ranjaan, Rattan, Raya Star, Snap Tie, Star Of Aragon, Starluck, Staying Article, Ted Spread, The Tiddly Tadpole, Une Artiste, Vendor.