Exeter 2.05 (Haldon Gold Cup) tips – go wild for Oscar

Exeter 2.05 (Haldon Gold Cup) tips - go wild for Oscar

Ozzie The Oscar

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Betting Tip: @ Ozzie The Oscar @ 5/2 with bet365

Paul Nicholls loves having a crack at the Haldon Gold Cup, winning it six times, including two of the last three renewals, so his pair of runners this year deserve plenty of respect.

His San Benedeto was a clear second behind another stablemate, Politolugue, 12 months ago and he has to be a player again, albeit he was a distant last of the six runners over hurdles at Kempton last month.

Bryony Frost keeps the ride on him, while Harry Cobden gets the leg up on the Nicholls-trained top weight Diego Du Charmil, who is preferred of the pair. The six-year-old took his form to a new level when winning a Grade 1 at Aintree in April and is best suited by today’s good ground.

But he’s now on a career-high mark and while I suspect there is more to come from him, I’m not sure he can concede 6lb to the race-fit OZZIE THE OSCAR. Trained by Philip Hobbs, who last won this with Planet Of Sound in 2009, he was in excellent form back in the spring, winning back-to-back races at Warwick (both on good ground), and should be all the sharper for his comeback third in the Welsh Champion Hurdle at Ffos Las 17 days ago.

Hobbs has probably had this race in mind for him for a while and he will have the services of Richard Johnson, who has been on board for all seven of his wins under Rules. I don’t think there will be much between him and Diego Du Charmil but, at the respective odds, he gets my vote.

It would be wrong not to mention the 2014 winner God’s Own, especially as he also finished third in the 2015 version, but he wasn’t at his best in four runs last season and has to give the improving selection 5lb.

The remaining runner, Theo, needs a career best now stepping up in class, although he knows how to win (4-8 over fences) and can’t be totally discounted off bottom weight.

Betting Tip: @ Ozzie The Oscar @ 5/2 with bet365

All odds were correct at time of posting.

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