Rachael Blackmore provides A Plus Tard update for Gold Cup 2023

Rachael Blackmore is optimistic about her Cheltenham Gold Cup chances with A Plus Tard despite the weather this week.

The Irish jockey looks to defend the title she won in 2022, when A Plus Tard finished in front of Minella Indo and Protektorat and the horse remains popular with tips this week.

There has been rain around Cheltenham racecourse throughout Wednesday and Thurday, but Blackmore remains bullish about her chances on one of racing’s biggest stages after picking up her second win of the week on Envoi Allen.

“He [Envoi Allen] is an incredible horse,” Blackmore told ITV Sport after the Ryanair Chase on Thursday.

“A phenomenal engine, always hoping he could do something like that, fair play to Henry and the team, he was electric.

“It’s lovely when you can take a little bit, he jumped really well, a happier horse, this is such a magic place, I feel so lucky to be here.

“I think he [A Plus Tard] seems to suit any conditions, I wouldn’t be worried by him, he hasn’t had the most ideal preparation, we’ll see.

“But he’s been working very well recently, we’re happy with him, we’ll see what happens.”

Thursday’s win doubled up victories for Blackmore after Tuesday’s emotional win with Honeysuckle in the Close Brothers Mares’ Hurdle.

Rachael Blackmore celebrates at Cheltenham (PA)
Rachael Blackmore celebrates at Cheltenham (PA)

Trainer Henry de Bromhead said: “It’s the fairytale ending that never normally happens. It’s incredible. I’m so happy for the mare and Rachael and Kenny (Alexander, owner) and all of us. This (reception) is what she deserves. She’s such an unbelievable mare. I’m blown away.

“We’ve had a terrible year with Jack and everything. It’s been an incredibly tough time and we’re really grateful for the support everyone has given us.

“You dream that these kind of things will happen, but more often than not they don’t. It’s the result everybody wanted, but you’d daren’t believe that it will happen.”