02 March 2023

Sounds Russian going for Gold Cup glory at Cheltenham

02 March 2023

Sounds Russian is Boodles Gold Cup-bound after connections made the decision to veto Kelso in favour of the Cheltenham Festival.

The eight-year-old has been in good form all season, winning the Edinburgh Gin Chase at Kelso on debut before placing fourth behind reigning Grand National hero and leading Gold Cup contender Noble Yeats in the Many Clouds at Aintree.

He was then second in the Rowland Meyrick at Wetherby and second again in the Cotswold Chase at Cheltenham – a trial for the Gold Cup in which he was beaten just a length a half by Ahoy Senor but reversed the form with the third-placed Noble Yeats.

Sounds Russian held an entry for Kelso’s Listed Premier Chase on Saturday and connections were pondering whether to aim for that or the Gold Cup, eventually deciding on the latter and not declaring for this weekend.

“The owners came on Tuesday and were quite keen to let him take his chance in the Gold Cup, so that’s where we’re going,” said Jefferson, who is the daughter of the late Malcolm Jefferson.

“I’ve never had a runner (in the Gold Cup) myself, I suppose we ran a couple in it (when her father was training), so it’ll be nice to have a crack.

“I’m realistic about his chances, but he’s a versatile, straightforward horse and he doesn’t do a lot wrong.

“Sean Quinlan will ride him, he’s ridden him round there now and so he should know what to do as the situation presents itself.

“I don’t think they’ll let the ground get quick, but it’s going to be challenging for them. He’s not ground dependent though, let’s be honest.”

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