‘Awesome’ Kauto gets green light

Kauto Star will run in the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup on Friday – and is available at 7/2 to succeed in his treble bid – after enjoying an ‘awesome’ schooling session at Ditcheat on Monday.

The 2007 and 2009 winner of the showpiece race had only been rated as ’50-50′ following a fall at trainer Paul Nicholls‘ Somerset yard earlier this month, but looked good in a gallop at Wincanton on Friday.

However, it was not until the 12-year-old came through another schooling session on Monday that Nicholls confirmed his participation in the Gold Cup, when he will renew rivalries with 7/4 favourite and defending champion Long Run.

Nicholls told his Betfair column: “Clive (Smith, owner) and I have given Kauto Star the green light for the Cheltenham Gold Cup after a very good schooling session on the grass this morning.

“Ruby came over to school him and Kauto was awesome, just as I’d thought he would be.

“He jumped six fences – the plain fence and the open ditch three times each – and he was foot perfect and looked magnificent.”

Kauto Star’s task has been made easier after David Pipe confirmed that unbeaten novice Grands Crus will stick to the novice route and contest the RSA Chase on Wednesday (Grands Crus 6/4 Fav RSA Chase winner), overlooking the temptation of the Gold Cup.

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