Cooper believes there is still life in Forpadydeplasterer
Published 13/11/2012 | 13:57
TOM Cooper believes Forpadydeplasterer could be the forgotten horse of Saturday’s Paddy Power Gold Cup at Cheltenham.
While the 10-year-old may not fit any of the statistics in that he has been around the block a bit and no horse with a double figure age has won since Clear Cut in 1975, Cooper feels there is still plenty of life in him yet.
He may be without a win since the 2009 Arkle but in that time he has finished second in another five Group Ones and run well in several other big races, usually when the ground has been against him.
He still holds an entry in Thursday`s Clonmel Oil Chase but another trip to Prestbury Park is on the cards, where he will take part in his first ever handicap.
"He'll be going to Cheltenham, not Clonmel," said Cooper.
"He`s never run in a handicap before and that`s part of the reason why we`re going, we want to see how he gets on.
"I think he`s on a very attractive mark (150), that`s why we`re keen to go.
"Obviously there`s a couple of very nice horses in there but they are only approaching their second season over fences whereas our lad is a seasoned campaigner.
"The ground should be lovely, the trip is what he wants these days and they`ll go a good clip which should be perfect for him - you never really get it in the small fields in Ireland he`s been running in.
"He might be getting on but he`s very consistent and he was only seven lengths behind Sizing Europe on his first run of the season."
Ferdy Murphy certainly knows how to ready a horse for a big day and if the rain stays away, Divers will have plenty of supporters having finished third 12 months ago.
Murphy said: "Divers definitely runs in the Paddy Power Gold Cup providing we don't get monsoon-type rain.
"He has come out of his race at The Showcase in really good form. He always takes a run to come to life and we are really happy with him.
"He ran very well when he finished third in the race last season, but the rain came on the Friday night and that didn't help. He loves good ground and the better the ground, the better his chance.
"The Paddy Power Gold Cup looks like it is going to be a fantastic race this year. There are a lot of very good horses and it looks very competitive.
"Providing the ground stays right for Divers, I think he will run an extremely good race.
"Timmy Murphy rides - his record around Cheltenham speaks for itself and I think he will really suit the horse."
Whether or not Gordon Elliott run Jamesie Hall in the race depends on the participation of top-weights Poquelin and Wishfull Thinking.
Elliott`s nine-year-old is currently 7lb out of the handicap but if those two were to miss the race for any reason, the weights could rise 4lb.
"We haven`t totally decided yet because he`s 7lb out of the weights," said Elliott.
"It`s 50-50 I`d say and if he doesn`t run he`ll go in the conditional jockeys' race on Friday."