Samcro is 40-1 for Cheltenham Gold Cup – in 2020
Star Novice described as ‘gentle giant’ by his first trainer, Colin Bowe
Samcro ridden by Jack Kennedy jumps the last to win The ‘Monksfield’ Novice Hurdle at Navan. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA
Samcro’s rocketing reputation as the most exciting novice in training means he is already only 7-4 to win at the Cheltenham festival in March.
In fact such is the impression the Michael O’Leary-owned star has made in just his two starts over hurdles to date he is 40-1 to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup – in 2020.
Samcro earned rave reviews for his spectacular victory in Sunday’s Monksfield Novice Hurdle at Navan after which trainer Gordon Elliott said all festival options remain open this season.
Both William Hill and RaceBets make it just 7-4 about Samcro winning at this season’s Cheltenham festival and the latter firm are thinking even further ahead, rating the five year old a prospective Gold Cup winner in 2020.
The man who produced Samcro to win his sole point-to-point before being sold to O’Leary’s Gigginstown Stud team believes the Ballymore Novice Hurdle could ultimately be the festival target in March.
Co Wexford-based trainer Colin Bowe said on Monday: “Gordon [Elliott] said to me he thinks two and a half miles will be his best trip for now.”
Bowe trained Samcro to win at the Monksgrange point-to-point in April of last year and reported that the chestnut son of Germany has always looked special.
“He’s a gentle giant. Everything comes easy to him. You wouldn’t have thought speed would be his biggest asset but he’s got plenty of boot,” he said.
“It’s my job to sell them on but I still get plenty of pride seeing them do well. It’s important to have horses flying the flag for you but I can’t take any credit once they leave me.
“He’s going to be very good over fences. The day he won his point-to-point, Gordon trained the second who he knew was a nice horse and that persuaded him to buy him,” he added.
In other news another Navan winner on Sunday, Crackerdancer, is likely to appear next at Limerick over Christmas.
The Ray Hackett-trained mare won a Listed bumper in gutsy fashion over the weekend and has come out of the race well.
“We are aiming towards a maiden hurdle for her at the moment. Limerick at Christmas will fit in perfect. She seems a lot more straightforward this year and doesn’t have to have bottomless ground. Once there’s an ease you’d be happy enough.
“If everything goes well at Limerick we’d be looking to step her up in grade again,” Hackett reported.