Alderwood likely to go to Fairyhouse or Liverpool for next start
National is outsider of three options
AP McCoy rides Alderwood to victory in the Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase Challenge Cup at Cheltenham. Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images
Less than a fortnight ago, Alderwood was a Cheltenham festival hero for the second year running in the Grand Annual but it is unclear where Tom Mullins ’s star performer will appear next.
Mullins left Alderwood in Sunday’s Powers Gold Cup at yesterday’s forfeit stage but hasn’t ruled out giving the Grade One-winning hurdler a little more time and waiting for Liverpool next week.
Alderwood is also among the possibles currently remaining in Monday’s Irish National.
“I would say the National is only an outside chance. I will leave him in the two-mile novice in Liverpool, and he’s in the Powers. I would say the plan is either Fairyhouse or Aintree,” Mullins said yesterday.
The Powers Gold Cup is over two-and-a-half miles, a trip Alderwood hasn’t tried over fences, but that isn’t a concern for Mullins who said: “The trip or the ground wouldn’t worry me at Fairyhouse.”
Another Grade One-winning hurdler who will definitely line up in the Powers Gold Cup is Oscars Well who skipped Cheltenham.
“He’s in very good form. He worked at the end of last week, I was delighted with him and he’ll work again on Wednesday. If all goes well then he’ll run on Sunday,” said trainer Jessica Harrington.
“We are going there with a fresh horse and we’re looking forward to it. Hopefully he goes there with a big chance,” she added.
Oscars Well finished runner -up to Benefficient, subsequent winner of the Jewson, on his last start at Leopardstown.
Harrington’s Jezki, third to Champagne Fever in the Supreme at Cheltenham, will wait for Punchestown next month where the target will be the two-mile novice hurdle.