Triumph Hurdle favourite Goshen may sidestep this weekend’s engagement at Haydock and head straight to the Cheltenham Festival.
A three-time winner on the Flat, Gary Moore’s juvenile has made a huge impression with wide-margin successes on each of his three starts over hurdles to date – scoring by 23 lengths at Fontwell, 34 lengths at Sandown and 11 lengths at Ascot.
The son of Authorized is a best priced 9-2 for the Triumph Hurdle, making him the joint-favourite with Dan Skelton’s Allmankind.
Moore has been keen to give his charge one more run before the showpiece meeting, in Saturday’s Unibet Victor Ludorum Juvenile Hurdle, but he is wary of the prospect of extremely testing conditions or any doubt about the Merseyside meeting going ahead.
“He’s in great order and looks fantastic,” the Sussex trainer told Sky Sports Racing.
“He’s nearly got his summer coat, and I couldn’t be more pleased with him.
“They say it’s heavy ground (at Haydock) – and he’s already had one trip up there and they called racing off. If it started to be in the balance again, I won’t send him – I don’t need him to have a six-hour journey and turn round and come back home again.
“I’m quite happy to wait for Cheltenham. He’s a very clean-winded horse and very easy to train. I’d like to have got one more run in, just to gain a bit of experience, but I don’t want to run him in a bog and tear the guts out of him- with Cheltenham only four weeks away.”
Another high-class juvenile hurdler housed at Moore’s yard is Botox Has, who has won at Fontwell and Cheltenham and finished second to Allmankind.
However, he is set to miss the Festival and wait for the Grand National meeting at Aintree.
Moore added: “You’d have to say that Goshen has a more Flat-bred pedigree than Botox Has – and he’d be a bit more streetwise. Botox Has is an ex-APQS horse who had never run on the Flat – he’s more of a horse for the future.
“I doubt Botox Has will go to Cheltenham. I’d say he’ll go straight to Liverpool (Aintree).”