Bookmakers have reported support for him in the February 9 contest, and a bloodless seven-length victory for the 4/7 favourite in the Connolly's Red Mills Novice Hurdle ensures the JP McManus-owned gelding has the correct qualifications for the valuable handicap and has also become a live Supreme Novices Hurdle contender.
Trainer Nicky Henderson said: "He's in there, he's had his three runs over hurdles and we did the same with Darlan last year. It's an option. He has got a lot of natural and raw talent."
Henderson also provided McCoy with his two other winners, with Malt Master recording a workmanlike victory in the novice chase. The 11/10 favourite – also owned by McManus – was functional rather than flamboyant on his second try over fences but sped five lengths clear of Asaid on the run to the line.
Glorious Twelfth (4/9 favourite) bought up the 7/2 hat-trick for Henderson and McCoy with a smooth success in the mares' maiden hurdle.