Friday 23 February 2018

Denman in line for raid on Punchestown

Denman remains under consideration to travel across the Irish Sea for next month's Guinness Punchestown Gold Cup.

The former Cheltenham Gold Cup winner was runner-up for the second year in a row at Prestbury Park last week, and trainer Paul Nicholls is keen to give him another run.

"He will run somewhere, but there's not a lot for him," said Nicholls. "Ruby (Walsh) said I shouldn't be afraid of entering him at Punchestown. I know it's right-handed, but it's a big circuit."

Reflecting on some of the other horses from Cheltenham, Nicholls continued: "Kauto Star definitely won't run again this season -- Master Minded is a bit jarred up and won't run again either. Big Buck's and What A Friend will go to Aintree."

Meanwhile, Willie Mullins is considering stepping Quevega up to three miles for the first time at Punchestown. The six-year-old landed her second David Nicholson Mares' Hurdle at Cheltenham Festival and she is now ready to take on the boys.

"She'll be entered in the three-mile race as well as the Champion Hurdle that she ran so well in last year," said Mullins. "I'm not sure Punchestown brings her stamina into play enough over two miles, so she might run over the longer trip."

Other potential Mullins entries are Cheltenham Gold Cup fifth Cooldine and Ryanair Chase third J'y Vole.

Irish Independent

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