Bobs Worth bidding to keep perfect track record intact at Cheltenham 2014
Few horses will feature in racing fans’ Cheltenham 2014 tips as 2013 Cheltenham Gold Cup king Bobs Worth.
After decimating a field of quality handicappers off 11st6lbs in the 2013 Hennessey Gold Cup in a manner similar to Cheltenham Gold Cup legend Denman, he led the Cheltenham betting for the rest of the National Hunt campaign, despite missing his intended prep race at Cheltenham’s Festival Trials Meeting.
His legions of backers need never have worried as, despite giving leading rivals Silviniaco Conti, Long Run and Sir Des Champs plenty of rope, he gobbled up the Cheltenham hill, leaving the finest steeplechasers around trailing in his wake.
Bobs Worth will be amongst the favourites in the Cheltenham 2014 odds once again after such a commanding performance and given his love of the unique demands presented by racing at Prestbury Park it’s hardly surprising.
His win in steeplechasing’s blue-riband race was the culmination of a five-race winning streak at the course which includes victories in the RSA Chase and the Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle at the two preceding Festivals.
Among his non-Festival wins at the course was a triumph over subsequent Champion Hurdle winner Rock On Ruby over 2m4f.
Those victories have always held a particular satisfaction for regular race rider Barry Geraghty – stable jockey to Bobs Worth’s trainer Nicky Henderson – who owned the son of Bob Back as a yearling before economic circumstances forced him to sell.
Luckily he was bought at auction and sold into the care of Champion Trainer Henderson and Geraghty has since ridden him in all but one of his 11 career races since.
It’s testament to the nine-year-old’s guts and determination that even during the injury-hampered section of his 2011/12 campaign he never finished out of the first three so it’s easy to see why he was among most punters’ Cheltenham 2014 tips as soon as he’d crossed the finish line last March.