Gary Moore hoping to be dual handed in search of fourth Betfair success

Mon 5 Feb 2018

Gary Moore will go in search of a fourth win in Saturday's Betfair Hurdle at Newbury with Knocknanuss.

The eight-year-old has not finished out of the first two in four runs over hurdles for Moore and went up 11lb for winning at Fontwell last time out.

Moore, who has also entered Maquisard, has won the Betfair Hurdle with Heathcote (2007), Wingman (2008) and Violet Dancer (2015) already.

"The plan is to run Knocknanuss in the Betfair Hurdle," said Moore.

"He won well at Fontwell on Boxing Day, although in fairness it was a bad race that day.

"We also have Maquisard in the race. He could run as well, although I think he may not get in the race."

Chris Gordon still needs some convincing over whether to run Remiluc, who was a winner at Cheltenham last time out.

"I have left Remulic in the Betfair Hurdle and, provided Newbury gets some rain later in the week and the ground turns in our favour, there is a good chance he will have a crack at it." said Gordon.

"One of his owners is very keen on the Betfair Hurdle and, although I have my eye on a race at Plumpton on Monday, why not have a go if the ground is suitable?"

High Bridge has been left on top weight of 11st 12lb with neither Elgin nor Pingshou left in the race at Monday's confirmation stage, with Willie Mullins' Bleu Et Rouge next best on 11st 10lb.

Ante-post favourite Lalor is still in the mix for Kayley Woollacott, with Nicky Henderson having five to choose from in Verdana Blue, Charli Parcs, Kayf Grace, Lough Derg Spirit and the revitalised Jenkins, who is able to run off his old mark of 143 rather than his new perch of 151.

Donald McCain has two possibles in Chti Balko and the novice Waterlord, but the ground will dictate which of the pair will run.

"It will very much be one or the other," said McCain.

"If the ground goes heavy again it will suit Chti Balko, but if it continues to dry up a bit that will very much suit Waterlord, so we've got one for each eventuality.

"With Waterlord it was simply a case at Haydock (last time) of trying him on heavy ground once too often. If we'd ridden him to come second we probably would have been, but he ended up fourth by trying to beat the winner (First Flow) who loved the ground.

"I've always thought Waterlord wants nice ground, but circumstances have meant he's been running on heavy.

"Chti Balko is very much at home on very deep ground, so we'll need to have a lot of rain for him to run."

Divin Bere, Moon Racer, Misterton, Kalashnikov and Poppy Kay are other major contenders.

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