Trainer Gearoid O’Loughlin is looking forward to seeing Cedarwood Road make his debut over fences in the coming weeks.
A runaway winner of a maiden hurdle at Leopardstown last Christmas, the five-year-old went on to land a Listed event at Naas in early March when claiming the notable scalp of the Noel Meade-trained Beacon Edge, who won a Grade Three at Galway over the weekend.
Cedarwood Road is set to embark on a career over the larger obstacles this season, with a return to Naas currently on the agenda.
O’Loughlin said: “He’s coming along fine and I’m hoping to start him off in a two-mile-three beginners (chase) in Naas on November 21.
“He’s a soft ground horse. Up to a few weeks ago we would have been thinking about starting him off over two miles, but the more we go on with him, we feel he’ll get a trip no problem.
“He’s doing everything right and is schooling over fences very well. The only thing is I’ve a small yard and he might come on for the run as we’ve no schooling races here at the moment and we can’t get into any of the racecourses after racing.
“We’re all a bit stuck for a racecourse gallop at the moment, but we’re trying our best.”
Another high-class performer O’Loughlin has in his care this season is Coeur Sublime, who like Cedarwood Road carries the colours of prominent owner Chris Jones.
The Elusive Pimpernel gelding was runner-up to Pentland Hills in the 2019 Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham and was last seen finishing down the field in the Champion Hurdle.
O’Loughlin added: “He’s in great order at the moment and he’s going to start off in the Morgiana Hurdle at Punchestown next month.
“We’re jumping into the deep end, but there’s not that many two-mile races for him to start off in – the WKD Hurdle in Down Royal, which he won last year, is for second season novices, so he didn’t qualify for that this year.
“He’s 152-rated, so you couldn’t really run him in a handicap, so he’ll tip away around in the Morgiana, he’ll come on from the run and Christmas will be the target after that.
“He’s had a few issues and you don’t improve a horse from Gordon Elliott’s, but if I can get him in the same frame of mind as he was in the Triumph or when he won for Gordon, he should run well enough.”