Meade positive about his two as Hennessy weights revealed
Monksland (right) is yet to quite match his classy hurdles form over fences
PICTURE: Getty Images Monksland and Warrior weights please Meade By Keith Melrose 1:21PM 9 NOV 2016
NOEL MEADE is planning a two-pronged assault on the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury a fortnight on Saturday and declared himself satisfied with both Monksland and Wounded Warrior after the weights for the race were released on Wednesday.
Monksland, a faller in the JNWine.com Champion Chase at Down Royal over the weekend, has been given a weight of 10st 7lb, while Wounded Warrior will carry 2lb higher should top weight Coneygree make his long-awaited return in the race.
Meade said of Monskland: "Monksland has come out of the weekend unscathed and there is every possibility he could go for the Hennessy Gold Cup. He is rated 3lb higher in England and I think the weight is fine, but whether he runs or not will depend on how he schools in the meantime.
"He looked to be going quite nicely at Down Royal when he came down but the fences are there to be jumped and that has been his Achilles' heel. He is not a bad jumper and that is actually the first time he has fallen, but he just misses a fence every so often."
Warrior needs it soft
He added of Wounded Warrior, last seen in February's Irish Gold Cup: "He is a fine, big horse who stays really well. It would have been nice to get a run into him but, with the ground the way it is, we haven't been able to because he wants it soft.
"He wants a trip and the further they go the better. He has the entry so we will sit down with the owners and see what they want to do."
Coneygree will reportedly run in either the Betfair Chase or the Hennessy, his intended early-season target last year before injury intervened. His weight is equivalent to a BHA mark of 170 and it puts him two above Silviniaco Conti and four ahead of last year's winner Smad Place.
It is a potentially top-class renewal of the race, though if Coneygree does run only those mentioned plus Charlie Hall winner Irish Cavalier (11st 2lb), Grand National runner-up The Last Samuri (11st 1lb), Sausalito Sunrise and Un Temps Pour Tout (both 11st) would carry 11st or more.
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