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HOLD 'EM TO RANSOM; O'Neill ace stakes Cheltenham Festival claim SEE PAGE 16; Make the bookies pay with Gifford's star in Paddy Power cracker; Ransom to make 'em pay.

Byline: NEWSBOY

GENEROUS RANSOM (nap) will be in demand for this afternoon's Paddy Power Gold Cup (2.25, CH4) at Cheltenham.

Chasing legend Josh Gifford won this race as both jockey and trainer and his son Nick has ambitions to follow in his father's footsteps.

In Generous Ransom, he may never have a better chance of grabbing the Paddy Power cash as the seven-year-old has crept in at the foot of the weights.

The gelding first showed a liking for Cheltenham's undulations when winning over today's trip in January, before returning third of 20 to today's rival Irish Cavalier in the novice handicap that closed the first-day card at the Festival last March.

The key to that performance was that Irish Cavalier was giving Generous Ransom a mere pound and beat him by three lengths. Today, Gifford's contender better off, but you can hardly say he's done much worse than Rebecca Curtis' grey in the intervening period.

Well beaten by Cocktails At Dawn at Sandown last April, Generous Ransom was given the summer off before having the perfect trial for today's race over hurdles at Cheltenham last month.

That will have blown away the cobwebs and, in a contest that will be run at a brutal pace, Generous Ransom's patient style of racing will be seen to best effect.

Double Ross showed a lot of his old form on comeback and is unquestionably handily weighted. But he's just one danger in an open race.

Annacotty has thrived in his new surroundings while Kings Palace will need to live up to the hype to show these a clean pair of heels.

Paul Nicholls has his team in sensational form and neither top weight Sound Investment or Art Mauresque can be totally discounted.

CAPTION(S):

GOING FOR GOLD Generous Ransom can land today's Paddy Power Gold Cup for Nick Gifford (above)

IN THE FRAME Double Ross has place claims

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 14, 2015
Words:317
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