Cheltenham Festival News

Royale Pagaille heading straight to Cheltenham Gold Cup

Mon 30 Jan 2023

Royale Pagaille is back in work and will head straight to the Boodles Cheltenham Gold Cup after recovering from injury, trainer Venetia Williams has confirmed.

The Rich Ricci-owned nine-year-old was runner-up to Bravemansgame in the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day, staying on nicely under Tom Scudamore in the three-mile Grade One event.

Winner of the Peter Marsh Chase at Haydock last season, he went on to finish fifth to A Plus Tard in the Gold Cup and has had just two starts since.

He was somewhat fortunate to claim second place on his last run, with Williams’ other runner, L’Homme Presse, unseating Charlie Deutsch at the last fence when a close-up second.

However, the run can be marked up a little, given that Royale Pagaille sustained an injury in the race.

Williams has now run out of time to give him a Gold Cup prep, for which he is a 40-1 chance with Coral.

Speaking at Hereford on Monday, the trainer said: “Royale Pagaille is fine. He needed time after the King George because he got a wound which wasn’t superficial, so that’s why it has taken quite a while.

“He is back on the gallops now and he will go straight to the Gold Cup. We haven’t got time to go for anything else.”

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