Colin Tizzard-trained Elegant Escape finished sixth in last year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup, however the runner looks set to swerve a second appearance in this race and the Tizzard team will instead aim straight towards an appearance in the 2020 Randox Health Grand National.
The 8-year-old got stuck in the mud when being pulled-up at Haydock Park in mid-February, however the horse is jumping well right now and connections consider a direct route into the showpiece Aintree marathon on April 4th to be the best approach.
Tizzard said: “We are going to give him a spin in the Grand National. He got stuck in the mud at Haydock last time. The horse is jumping out of his skin at the moment.
“It has not been a bad preparation, the Gold Cup for the Grand National, but he is the sort of horse that would give himself a hard race and it is only three weeks before, so I doubt we will see him there.”
Elegant Escape is a general 33/1 shot for the 2020 Randox Health Grand National although several bookmakers are going as low as 20/1.
Joe Tizzard, assistant trainer to his father Colin, is confident that Lostintranslation can bounce back to his previous best in the Cheltenham Gold Cup next week. The former jockey is of the opinion that the dual Grade One winner can add to his previous season wins at Haydock and Carlisle in his third appearance at the Cheltenham Festival.
The 8-year-old finished well down the field in the 2018 Supreme and came second in the JLT last year, however he has plenty to prove after getting pulled up in the King George VI Chase and Tizzard is anticipating an improved showing on this occasion.
He said: “I quite like the fact he has gone a bit quiet now as he can come in there without too much pressure and we feel we have him right back to where we want him.
“He has been freshened right up and he goes there really well. We’ve not lost any faith in him. The season was going perfectly after Haydock and the wheels fell off a bit at Kempton.
“We have tweaked his wind as he has had a soft palate operation since, but that is something that was mentioned before.
“I think he perhaps had a harder race than we thought (at Haydock), it was only three and a bit weeks before and it perhaps just left its toll a bit. He really has come back to himself at home and he looks a picture.
“He has got a live chance going into it as he is a good horse. We are really happy with where he is.”