GOSHEN was back to his dominant best at Wincanton on Saturday with trainer Gary Moore confirming: “it’s the Champion Hurdle next.”
The five-year-old had been off colour in two Flat runs and one spin over hurdles since his dramatic final flight error cost him last year’s Triumph Hurdle.
He lined up in the Kingwell Hurdle with a point to prove having failed to beat a rival home in the International Hurdle at Cheltenham in December.
But he travelled and jumped with all of his old zest as he ran a classy field into the ground under Jamie Moore.
The high-class Song For Someone was 22 lengths adrift in second, and the winning rider could not hide his delight on the run-in, patting Goshen down the neck as he coasted home.
His odds for the Champion Hurdle were slashed across the board, with Paddy Power going 5-1 from 16s.
Winning rider Moore said: “It was a very rewarding performance. Just pleased to get him somewhere near his best for dad and the owners.
“We wouldn’t have run him if we didn’t think he was right. His last bit of work on Tuesday was very good and we’ve been happy with him.
“We wanted to go to Sandown a couple of weeks ago and it was called off. It’s good we’ve got a run into him.
“Dad has tried a different training regime with the horse and it’s worked. The horse has enjoyed it and we’ve got him fit in different ways.”
Speaking from home, Gary Moore was similarly over the moon to have his stable star back in top form.
He said: “I was very pleased, over the moon.
“I didn’t know what to expect. I knew I had him in a good place and fair play to Jamie. He told me when he worked him on Tuesday he would win.
“I was just hoping he would do what he has done today.
“It has to be the Champion Hurdle next. It has always been the target since last year. We’re hoping we can go there with every chance.
“Hopefully there’s a little bit of improvement to come from him.”
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