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O’Grady will wait and Sea

Edward O'Grady is still weighing up the options for his Paddy Power Gold Cup hero Tranquil Sea.

The Grade One-winning hurdler was largely disappointing during his first campaign over fences but has seemed right back to his best this season, registering wins at Naas and most recently in the valuable handicap at Cheltenham.

The John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Chase on December 6 and the Gold Cup the following week are among the options, but O'Grady said: “He's come out of the race well and we were obviously very pleased with him, but we haven't decided where we're going to go next with him yet.”

The handler continued: “He's in the John Durkan at Punchestown and we will also have a look at the Boylesports, but we'll just have to see what happens. I think he's been put up 8lb but I'm not sure and we'll have to see what the top-weights would be at Cheltenham.

“We're very happy with what he has done so far and hopefully he can continue that way.”

O'Grady also had news of Jumbo Rio, who was beaten just half a length in a Grade One event in France last Sunday.

“He ran very well, but maybe he just didn't quite get home over the two and a half miles,” the trainer added. “He's come out of it well and he may now go to Leopardstown at Christmas back over two miles.”

O'Grady, meanwhile, is considering switching Catch Me back to the smaller obstacles for the Bar One Racing Hatton's Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse on Sunday week.

The seven-year-old, winner of the race 12 months ago, has been campaigned over fences so far this season, making a winning introduction at Cork before failing to complete in a Listed event at Navan.

O'Grady now needs to decide whether to let his charge have another go over the larger obstacles in the Bar One Racing Drinmore Novice Chase, or go back over timber in the Grade One hurdle he won 12 months ago when beating Brave Inca.

Belfast Telegraph


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