Monbeg Dude Entered for Cheltenham Gold Cup
Trainer Michael Scudamore admits that Monbeg Dude will need to continue improving to be any chance in the Grade 1 feature of the Cheltenham Festival but said it was £600 he was happy to spend.
“It’s probably very, very speculative and he’ll have to go to Haydock (in the Grand National Trial) next month and be very impressive there,” Scudamore said.
“We’re probably getting carried away and dreaming but if he was very impressive at Haydock and it came up very soft at Cheltenham we’d be disappointed that we didn’t spend £600 to put him in.”
The son of Witness Box would be considered a leading chance for the Grand National Trial but Scudamore isn’t confident his jumping ability isn’t good enough.
However, he is enlisting the support of Olympic Equestrian medalist Zara Phillips, whose husband Mike Tindall part-owns the horse, in an attempt to improve Monbeg Dude over the jumps.
“Mike [Tindall] spoke with Zara after the race and she thinks there are things she can do to improve his jumping,” Scudamore said.
“Sending problem jumpers to people connected with eventing seems to be the fashionable thing.”
Scuadmore admitted that even if Monbeg Dude improved his jumping he would like not be subjected to the grueling Grand National at Aintree this early in his career.
“We are certainly not keen on Aintree this year,” Scuadmore said.
“He’s already done far more than we could have asked for this season and we’re very happy with our lot.
“He’s still pretty much a novice. It was only his sixth race over fences.”
Monbeg Dude is currently priced at 50/1 in the Cheltenham Gold Cup betting market at Bet365.
You can find the best early odds for the Cheltenham Gold Cup and every other major race during the Cheltenham Festival at Bet365.