Minella Indo's Irish Gold Cup run has put him back on track in his quest to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup for the second year in a row, according to trainer Henry de Bromhead.
The reigning Gold Cup champion finished six and a half lengths behind Conflated and is 11/2 for the Festival showpiece next month, which will be available on the Sports Live Streaming platform.
It was a timely return to form for Minella Indo at Leopardstown after he was pulled up in the King George at Kempton.
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With Robbie Power in the saddle for the first time, Minella Indo stayed on to good effect after shock 18/1 winner Conflated got first run and the greater emphasis on stamina at Cheltenham will be right up his street.
The Barry Maloney-owned nine-year-old has produced his best at the festival, winning the Albert Barlett in 2019 and finishing second to Champ in the 2020 RSA before claiming Gold Cup glory from stablemate A Plus Tard last year.
De Bromhead said: "Indo is really good. It was lovely to see him performing like that again. It was a slowly run race and turned into a bit of a sprint.
"The winner won well but we went there trying to get back on track and I felt we really did that, so I'm delighted with him."
Power, who won the Gold Cup on Sizing John in 2017, added: "I had a great ride. He travelled and jumped super. You'd have to be very happy with him going forward.
"Davy [Russell, on Conflated] injected a bit of pace into the race at the back of the third-last and I was delighted with the way my fella kept at it. You could definitely argue that he ran better in the race this year than he did last year."
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