Seabass All Set For Return

Wed 30th Jan 2013, 13:38

©Healy Racing Photos
By Gary Carson
Ted Walsh will make a decision after working Seabass this weekend regarding his participation in the Hennessy Gold Cup at Leopardstown on Saturday week.

The 10-year-old could make his first start since last year's Grand National in either the Grade 1 event or a hurdle race at Fairyhouse next Tuesday.

The gelding finished third at Aintree last April, under Walsh's daughter Katie, when sent off joint-favourite for the famous race.

A return trip to Liverpool is the main aim for Seabass again this season and he has been kept under wraps with that target in mind.

“It all depends on how forward he is when he works this weekend. This next piece of work will tell us,” said the Kill handler today.

“I'd prefer to run in the Hennessy and if I think he's capable of a respectable run I'd like to run in it.

“There is also a hurdle race at Fairyhouse next Tuesday for him.

“We'll see how he is after that run and he'll have another couple of runs before the National.

“There are plenty of options. There is the Bobbyjo and there are also races at Gowran and Naas. The Racing Post Chase at Kempton is another option.”

Seabass hasn't run since his third-placed effort at Aintree last season and Walsh revealed that was intentional.

“There wasn't really anything for him that he had a chance of winning. He wasn't good enough for the Lexus and races like that.

“Off a mark of 152 or 153 he's up against it in the National with another five or six pounds on his back than last year.

“If he did win a little race he would be nearly top-weight so we decided to try and protect his handicap mark. He's got dodgy old legs and I didn't want to run for the sake of running.”

Katie Walsh will be on board after recently returning from injury.

Flemenstar in top form ahead of Hennessy

Peter Casey believes Flemenstar is "better than he ever was" ahead of the Hennessy Gold Cup at Leopardstown on Saturday week.