David Pipe will allow Dynaste a third chance at the almost unthinkable – even if he cannot envisage the grey preventing Big Buck’s from claiming a fourth consecutive Ladbrokes World Hurdle.
After twice trying and failing to topple the supreme staying hurdler with Grands Crus last season, Pipe saw Dynaste blown out of the water in the Long Walk at Ascot, but got much closer with the improving six-year-old in the Cleeve at Cheltenham.
Dynaste was second, rather than fourth, and was still in front at the last before the relentless Big Buck’s pulled seven lengths clear.
“All roads lead to the World Hurdle and he won’t mind what the ground is,” Pipe said.
“It will be very nearly impossible to beat Big Buck’s, but it won’t stop us from trying, and if he can finish in the first three it would be a great run.
“Hopefully he can then be an RSA horse next year.”
Dynaste was one of the very few horses paraded at Pond House’s media morning with a confirmed Cheltenham Festival target as most of the others have more than one entry.
Great Endeavour could be one of the stable’s few big contenders in one of the open races if he is confirmed for the Ryanair Chase, but may yet revert to handicap company.
The winner of the 2010 Byrne Group Plate at the course, as well as this season’s Paddy Power, Great Endeavour failed to quite see out a longer trip when attempting to follow up in the Hennessy.
“He’s best fresh and better on better ground,” the trainer explained.
“He’s in the Ryanair and will be entered in the Byrne Group Plate.
“Either he carries top weight in the Byrne, or he will have a few pounds to find with Riverside Theatre in the Ryanair.
“But I’m sure whatever race he runs in, he’ll run a big race.”
Pipe currently has the favourite for the John Smith’s Grand National in Junior and last year’s Kim Muir winner could continue his warm-up at Cheltenham.
“Everything leads to the Grand National and I’m hoping to give him another run either in the Grimthorpe at Doncaster, or the JLT Speciality Handicap Chase or the Gold Cup,” he said.
“He’s had a run over hurdles to blow out the cobwebs and the Gold Cup has been a good trial for the Grand National in the past.”
Long-term absentee The Package could join Junior, with Pipe adding: “He’s not been back with us for that long, but he’s in great form and will hopefully run in the JLT Speciality Handicap Chase – a race he was second in two years ago – and after that the National.”
Buena Vista is being prepared for an incredible third success in the Pertemps Final, while Salut Flo has been saved for the Festival and is “in everything.”
Our Father, who continues to look a fine prospect, has also been freshened up and is more likely to go for the Coral Cup or Pertemps Final than the World Hurdle.
Kazlian will be the yard’s only juvenile runner, either in the Triumph, Fred Winter or Martin Pipe conditional jockeys’ race, while Pipe is waiting to find out what handicap mark Fiulin gets before committing him to anything specific.