Joshua Moore is relishing the opportunity to partner the progressive Baron Alco in today’s feature race, the £160,000 BetVictor Gold Cup (2.25pm) at Cheltenham on day two of The November Meeting.
Trained by his father Gary, the seven-year-old son of Dom Alco finished second in the 2017 Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate Handicap Chase.
Runner-up on his seasonal debut over an extended two miles and three furlongs at Chepstow in October, Moore is hopeful of a good run from the unexposed gelding in the two mile and five furlong contest.
He said: “Baron Alco’s in good form. He has good form at the track and ran well at The Festival in March 2017.
“He seems to enjoy the fences and give it his best shot. He ran very well at Chepstow after a long break.
“He hadn’t been over-trained for that Chepstow race and hopefully he can come forward from it.
“The ground should suit him. He is quite a versatile horse and it should be to his liking.
“You’d have to think he would have a very good chance.
“He is a solid horse and you know what you get with him.
“He gallops, jumps and tries – all of those attributes are required for a race like this.”
Gary Moore’s other runner Benatar has been ruled out of the BetVictor Gold Cup due to his blood analysis not being normal.
Jerry McGrath is looking forward to partnering the Nicky Henderson-trained Rather Be in today’s feature race
A head second to Mister Whitaker, who also lines up in today’s contest, in the Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, the seven-year-old son of Oscar has an excellent record fresh and bids to provide Britain’s champion Jump trainer Henderson with a second victory in the two mile and five furlong event following Fondmort’s 2003 success and 40 years after his first runner, Zongalero, finished second.
Rather Be, is 9lb better off with Mister Whitaker.
McGrath said: “Rather Be is in very good form at home. He has a lovely racing weight of 11st in the race and he’s been schooling well.
“The ground in his favour which is a big favour and we’re all looking forward to it.
“It was such a tight finish at the Cheltenham Festival and we’ll try to make amends for it today.
“I broke my arm in this race last year when my old pal Theinval fell, but that is the ups and downs of racing.
“Nicky’s horses are in great form. He hasn’t had a prep run but he’s done enough work at home.”