Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Synchronised is becoming increasingly likely to take his chance in the John Smith’s Grand National at Aintree on Saturday week.
Trainer Jonjo O’Neill is waiting for owner J P McManus to decide whether to let the nine-year-old be among his team for the world’s most famous steeplechase.
But he believes Synchronised should be given the chance to attempt to become the first horse to win both the Gold Cup and National in the same season since Golden Miller in 1934.
“This is his game, his distance – and I might never have him in this form again,” O’Neill told The Times.
“The four-week gap after Cheltenham is a big advantage and he came out of it buzzing. Logically, he should run.
“If he’d finished second, third or fourth in the Gold Cup there wouldn’t even be a discussion. But he won it and that’s the thing.
“You just want to put him in a glass cage so nothing happens to him.”
Champion jockey Tony McCoy, who ended his National hoodoo when winning on Don’t Push It for McManus and O’Neill in 2010, believes the signs are right for Synchronised to run.
“Obviously the Gold Cup is a hugely difficult race to win. It’s a very gruelling race,” McCoy told Sky Sports News.
“Jonjo thinks that Synchronised in the last three weeks and even more so from the Gold Cup that he’s really coming to himself more than he ever was,”
“If that was the case it would be very difficult not to run him.”
Betting on the Grand National also suggests Synchronised is set to get the go-ahead.
Betfair spokesman Tony Calvin said: “It has been a real ’Will He, Won’t He?” story on Betfair as regards Synchronised running in the Grand National.
“Literally two minutes before the last acceptance stage someone thought he wouldn’t even be entered and he drifted to 149-1 to win the race on Betfair - but our market now suggests he will be running.
“He is the new 11-1 favourite on Betfair, the lowest price he has been on our market. He will certainly get much shorter though if and when he is confirmed for the race.”
John Smith’s Grand National, Betfair bet: 11-1 Synchronised, 12-1 Junior, 15-1 Chicago Grey Ballabriggs, 16-1 Cappa Bleu, 18-1 West End Rocker, Seabass, 19-1 Killyglen, 21-1 Sunnyhillboy, 24-1 Giles Cross, Shakalakaboomboom, Organisedconfusion, 26-1 bar.