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The Lord's calling

DESPITE winning an RSA Chase in 2013, then the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2014, Jim Culloty's Lord Windermere still has a bit to prove to the masses as we head in to 2015.

The outcome of his Cheltenham Gold Cup triumph back in March was a surprise. The 20/1 trained Lord Windermere - then without a win since his RSA success - beat the Thyestes Chase winner On His Own, himself a 16/1 shot, by a shorthead.

Lord Windermere had put his poor runs in the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury, the Lexus Chase at Leopardstown and the Irish Hennessy at the same venue behind him to become the first Irish trained winner of a Gold Cup since 2006, but as of now he is still only third favourite in places to win tomorrows Lexus and fourth favourite to win back his Cheltenham crown.

That lack of confidence from the general public all comes on the back of an extremely pleasing run over an unsatisfactory trip of 2m4f in the John Durkan behind Don Cossack.

It's hard to know why he hasn't stolen the hearts of the Irish public but tomorrow could be the day in which he does just that. His trainer Jim Culloty will say that things never went according to plan until Cheltenham last year so after a pleasing seasonal bow, there can be no excuse ahead of tomorrow's assault on one of the most prestigious races in the calendar.

If Lord Windermere adds his name to the Lexus Chase roll of honour tomorrow he'll deserve to be vying for favouritism in the Gold Cup and at 5/1 for the tomorrow's Leopardstown highlight against the joint favourites Boston Bob, who was second in the Durkan, and Bobs Worth who hasn't ran this season but won this race 12-months ago, is a gamble worth taking.

Lord Windermere couldn't be the most confident selection you'll back this Christmas but in the same race people could do worse than back Home Farm each way.

On only his second run for Henry de Bromhead he has a lot to find at ratings but he may just have a bit up his sleeve.


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