PADDY POWER have stumped up a massive £125,000 bonus to anyone who can complete the Irish and Cheltenham Gold Cup double.

The Irish bookmaker has issued a direct challenge to UK trainers to come and have a go in their big race at Leopardstown next month.

Henry de Bromhead, Willie Mullins and Co helped account for the 23-5 mauling of the home team at last year's Cheltenham Festival.

And given the strength of their squads for 2022, many fear a repeat could be on the cards.

But Paddy Power want to see the best of British on show and have dangled the £125,000 (€150,000) carrot in an attempt to get the top horses going head-to-head in quick succession.

Spokesman Paddy Power said: "We wanted to make things a little more interesting this year, so on top of trying to attract more of the big Irish contenders to the race, we are also laying down the gauntlet to UK trainers to come and have a go at running a horse in Ireland’s principal steeplechase and beating us in our own backyard.

"Let’s not forget that the UK trainers took one hell of a beating last year on their own turf, with Ireland recording a record 23 victories at Cheltenham, so they shouldn’t need any more motivation to come over here and win some pride back.

"But a €150k bonus with the blue riband double is not a bad tempter is it?

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"Personally, I’ll be hoping both the cups and the bonus stay this side of the Irish Sea!"

Only three horses have managed the double.

English-trained Jodami in 1993, Irish-trained Imperial Call in 1996 and Jessica Harrington's Sizing John in 2017.

Entries for the €250,000 Irish Gold Cup close today.

The Cheltenham Gold Cup will be run on Friday, March 18, the final day of the four-day Festival.

Paddy Power Irish Gold Cup

Paddy Power odds: 2-1 Kemboy, 9-4 Minella Indo, 9-2 Frodon, Melon, 8-1 Asterion Forlonge, 10-1 Delta Work, Janidil, 12-1 Tornado Flyer

Cheltenham Gold Cup

Paddy Power odds: 7-2 A Plus Tard, 9-2 Galvin, 8-1 Al Boum Photo, Minella Indo, 10-1 Protektorat, 12-1 Tornado Flyer, 14-1 Asterion Forlonge, 16-1 Chantry House, Champ, 20-1 bar


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