Bet365 Gold Cup 2016: Timeform's runner-by-runner guide

The finale of the jumps season takes place at Snadown on Saturday
The finale of the jumps season takes place at Snadown on Saturday

Timeform bring you their runner-by-runner guide to the 2016 bet365 Gold Cup.

"This step up in trip could bring about further improvement and he looks the one to be with."

Sausalito Sunrise - Won two valuable handicaps this season at Cheltenham in November and Ascot in February, but below form when trying to keep tabs on the thriving Many Clouds at Kelso last time. Will be suited by this trip but career-high handicap mark to contend with.

Dynaste - Not won since taking the 2014 Ryanair Chase and has struggled to get competitive at the highest level, though posted one of better efforts in a while when fourth in the Bowl at Aintree last time. First start in a handicap over fences and not out of things from this mark.

Sir Des Champs - Top-class chaser at his peak but looked a shadow of his former self in Irish Gold Cup and unseated his rider in the Grand National on latest start after making significant jumping errors.

Bishops Road - Progressed again for new connections when winning Haydock Grand National Trial in the mud in February, but didn't make cut in the National itself and then unseated at the first in the Topham (well backed). Ground looks to be against him here.

The Druids Nephew - Shaped encouragingly in the Grimthorpe (runner-up to The Last Samuri) but was ultimately disappointing in the Grand National last time, let down by his jumping and eventually being pulled up. Needs to bounce back.

Oscar Rock - Looked an improved horse when embarking on his second season over fences in September, winning at Market Rasen, but has finished down the field in warm Cheltenham handicaps twice since. Something to prove now.

Carole's Destrier - Won London National over this C&D in December (win more convincing than final margin) but produced a rare below-par effort when pulled up in Ultima Handicap at Cheltenham Festival last time. Not fully exposed and will be a player if bouncing back over this longer trip.

Theatre Guide - Back to something like his very best when winning BetBright Chase at Kempton in February but 10 lengths, but fell at Cheltenham Festival on latest start. Also now 11 lb higher in the handicap that for latest win.

Southfield Theatre - Runner-up in the 2015 RSA Chase and lightly campaigned since. Going well when brought down at the thirteenth in Ultima Handicap at the Cheltenham Festival last time and fresher than most here. Well treated on RSA second and is a major player for in-form yard.

Saint Are - Second in last year's Grand National and matched that effort when winning veterans' chase at Doncaster in February. Let down by jumping in latest National, however, and has career-high mark contend with here.

Henri Parry Morgan - Has improved in leaps and bounds since being fitted with a tongue strap, posting wide-margin victories at Chepstow and Uttoxeter before career-best second to Native River in Grade 1 Mildmay Chase at Aintree. Can probably improve further upped in trip again and should be considered.

Le Reve - Goes well at this track, third in this race last year from 1 lb lower in the weights, and won three-mile handicap here for second successive occasion in February. Went well for long way in Grand National last time and one to bear in mind.

The Young Master - Once again gave the impression that he is up to winning a big handicap from this sort of mark when third in the Ultima Handicap at the Cheltenham Festival last time. Should appreciate this extra emphasis on stamina and not one to write off.

Seventh Sky - Ran better than he has for a while when fourth at Cheltenham on latest outing, but mark may still be on the high side (still 3 lb higher than last win) and also has stamina to prove.

Just A Par - Won this race last year from 5 lb lower mark but has run to form on just one occasion since (when second at Exeter in March). Struggled when sixteenth in the Grand National last time and something to prove at present, though obviously cannot be ruled out.

Measureofbydreams - Well backed for the Scottish Grand National last week after good third in the National Hunt Chase at the Cheltenham Festival only to fall at the third. Jumping was an issue at Cheltenham, too, and something to prove in that regard here.

Drop Out Joe - Won at Chepstow in October and Badger Ales Trophy Handicap Chase at Wincanton in November, but has been well below that form on two starts in March and has something to prove.

Spring Heeled - Shaped as if better than ever when second in Munster National at Limerick in October but has gone backwards badly since, looking increasingly temperamental.

Hadrian's Approach - Very lightly raced since winning this from a 2 lb higher mark in 2014 (in cheekpieces, left off here) and shaped encouragingly when seventh in BetBright Chase at Kempton in February. Lived up to his reputation as a sketchy jumper when unseating at the first in the Grand National last time, though, and is a risky proposition again here.

Gold Futures - Seemed suited by the step up in trip when winning at Kelso over 3¼m in October. Rusty at after five months off at the same course last time and needs more from a career-high mark, though is at least progressive.


Timeform's bet365 Gold Cup 1-2-3
1. Henri Parry Morgan
2. Southfield Theatre
3. The Young Master


Timeform Analyst's Verdict
The progressive HENRI PARRY MORGAN has not looked back since being fitted with a tongue tie and produced a career-best effort when second in the Grade 1 Mildmay at Aintree last time. This step up in trip could bring about further improvement and he looks the one to be with. Paul Nicholls' Southfield Theatre looks to have had this as his target for some time and is the obvious danger, while The Young Master probably has a handicap of this type in him at some stage and is also one to consider.

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