Goshen Chases History

Saturday at Ascot

Top-weight Goshen is on course for the £105 000 Gr3 Betfair Exchange Trophy, one of the highlights on day two of Ascot’s Howden Christmas Racing Weekend, on Saturday 18th December.

Gary Moore’s stable star is chasing a piece of history in the near two-mile handicap, with no top-weight having been successful since the race was first run at Ascot in 2001.

Goshen burst on to the scene as a juvenile hurdler two seasons ago and posted his best performance so far in Wincanton’s Gr2 Kingwell Hurdle in February, when he trounced Song For Someone by 22 lengths.

After struggling behind Honeysuckle at the Cheltenham and Punchestown Festivals, the five-year-old finished fourth on his seasonal return in the G2 Coral Hurdle at Ascot on 20th November.

Moore said: “The plan is to run Goshen this weekend. We have obviously spoken about the Christmas Hurdle, but I think the ground is going to be more suitable for him at Ascot than Kempton.

“We’ll go to Ascot, see what happens, and then we can take a view on Kempton afterwards. It is unlikely he will do both but we’ll take it one race at a time.

“He came out of the Coral Hurdle really well and we have been very pleased with him since. He is just pretty ground dependant and hopefully the ground stays as it is.

“Obviously, giving a lot of weight away in a handicap such as this is not going to be easy but, in my mind, he should be very competitive off this mark. I would be very hopeful of a big run, anyway.”

Regarding some of his other entries at the Howden Christmas Racing Weekend, Moore added: “I like our horse Authorised Speed in the Listed bumper. He was unlucky at Market Rasen, but we like him a lot.

“Fifty Ball has a couple of entries and I guess where he goes depends on whether Bob Olinger comes over. Somebody told me he wasn’t but it’s bad news for the rest of us if he does!

“Hecouldbetheone may well run in the Gr2 Howden Kennel Gate Novices’ Hurdle. There aren’t many entries and it looks a nice opportunity to get some good experience into him.”

Goshen is a 9/1 chance with Betfair Sportsbook, with the market headed by JP McManus’ No Ordinary Joe. The 4/1 favourite is aiming to give trainer Nicky Henderson a record fifth success in the race, following Chauvinist, Jack The Giant, Sentry Duty and Brain Power.

Other leading contenders among the 16 entries include Gr3 Greatwood Handicap Hurdle victor West Cork and Samarrive, who bolted up in a Listed handicap hurdle at Sandown Park earlier this month.

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