Cheltenham Gold Cup favourite favourite Presenting Percy could be unleashed for the second time this season at Gowran Park in what will be his last prep race for the big one in March.
The Grade 2 Red Mills Chase looks to be the highlight in Ireland at the weekend and we help to give Cheltenham punters a better indication of what the odds for the Gold Cup will look like.
The Pat Kelly trained eight year old will be having his first stint over the larger obstacles this season in an event that will need to be taken seriously against a very strong field of runners.
The Gold Cup favourite who is owned by the likeable Philip Reynolds will take on a maximum of seven runners come Saturday with one of his challengers being the Henry De Bromhead trained Monalee who he destroyed in there last meeting at the festival last year when romping home in the RSA Chase.
Other familiar faces that could be seen in the same race at Gowran park are Third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup last season Anibale Fly, Willie Mullins trained Killultagh Vic, Bachasson and the Joseph O'Brien's veteran Edwulf.
(Credit Racing Post) Presenting Percy's Owner said: "I spoke to Pat this morning and he's very happy with Presenting Percy."
He came out of the Galmoy Hurdle very well and has improved from that. Pat has a measure to go on because we were in exactly the same place last year targeting the same race this weekend."
Reynolds added: "Of Presenting Percy's last five runs, four of them will have come at Gowran Park, so he has kind of made Gowran his home. It will be nice to get him back there, and back over fences as well.
"It would be great to see him win but it's not going to be the end of the world if he doesn't. A bit like last year, we'll be going there hopeful rather than confident. It's a race that should put him spot on for the Gold Cup."
(Credit Racing TV)
Looking back at his latest win which saw him take his tally to 10 in his career his owner added how special it was to do at a track he loves.
Reynolds said: "When you hear Davy Russell say, 'It's days like this that we ride for' on a Thursday at Gowran Park, that sums up what a reception it was. It was unbelievable. Presenting Percy was even clapped out of the parade ring. That doesn't happen often."
Presenting Percy's love affair with Gowran has been so beneficial for the track and will be even more so if he does go on to land one of the biggest prizes in jumps racing at the festival in March.
Manager Of Gowran Park Eddie Scally added: "We're thrilled to see him coming back and he's really started to turn into the people's horse.
"We're delighted Pat seems to love Gowran Park and continues to run him here. He's the darling of Irish racing and we'd be delighted to have him back.
"It's not going to be a walk in the park with Monalee, Anibale Fly and Killultagh Vic in there. It's a Grade 1 in all but name. He'll be put to the test and it should be a great race.
"Red Mills have been sponsoring the race for 39 years now so to see it being elevated to where it is now is great. It's a credit to everyone involved."