King eyes Festival run for Medinas
Welsh Champion Hurdle winner Medinas is set to be given a choice of entries at the Cheltenham Festival in March.
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The five year old showed a tenacious attitude to win the two and a half mile limited handicap at Ffos Las on Saturday despite the extremely testing ground and it's no surprise that his trainer, Alan King, isn't concerned about the possibility of testing ground at Cheltenham.
Reflecting on the performance King said: "He is such a tough little horse, and I was always quietly confident that he would handle the ground as I remember his first run in a bumper at Wetherby, where it was bottomless. I nearly pulled him out that day, but we took a chance and he sailed through the mud and was only a beaten a length by a more experienced horse (Distime)."
Jockey Wayne Hutchinson praised Medinas for having "the heart of a lion", observing "every time I asked for a bit more he delivered for me.
"Medinas coped with the ground exceptionally well, but I think his break had done him good, too. He had two tough races in the space of 16 days around October-November time, but the boss has freshened him up, and he was really bouncing at Ffos Las," Hutchinson added.
Medinas is set to be handed entries in both the Coral Cup and the Pertemps Final at the Cheltenham Festival.
King also saddled Balder Succes in the Welsh showpiece but he weakened into eighth having travelled well and is set to be dropped in trip with King believing that a lack of stamina was to blame.