Clever Cookie remains on course for tilt at the Betfred Ebor
Last Updated: 21/07/14 11:49am
Clever Cookie remains on course for a tilt at the Betfred Ebor at York on August 23.
Peter Niven's stable star, a staying-on ninth in the John Smith's Cup earlier this month, is in good form at his Malton base and will be trained for the valuable handicap on the Knavesmire next month.
A Grade Two winner over hurdles and beaten just once in four starts on the Flat, his last race was not run to suit the six-year-old but his trainer remains upbeat.
He said: "It wasn't a bad run and I'm pleased with the way he has come out of the race. He stayed on well off a slow pace and the ground probably got a little bit too quick for him.
"They went a crawl and it turned into a seven furlong sprint. Everything just happened too quick for him and it was only the two horses towards the head of affairs that got involved."
Still as short as 10-1 in the ante-post market for the Ebor, Clever Cookie has been eased just 1lb in the weights but Niven is confident that the step back up in trip will play to his strengths.
"I don't think he'll have to improve too much and if we can get good ground I'd be expecting an improved performance from him," said Niven.
"Let's not forget that he's been on the go for a long time and he's gone up a lot in the weights as well. He'll appreciate a short break and I'd expect the step back up in distance to be to his liking next month."