FORMER classy Flat performer Never Do Nothing will chance his arm in Grade 1 company at Leopardstown as long as the ground stays in his favour next month.
Bought out of Andrew Balding’s yard for 135,000 guineas by John McConnell, the Casamento gelding was an easy winner first time out over hurdles at Musselburgh.
He progressed all through last summer on the Flat, winning at Goodwood in June before finishing second at the Shergar Cup and signing off with a third in a £100,000 race at Ascot – ending with a rating of 91.
“We’ve entered him for Leopardstown (in the Spring Juvenile Hurdle on February 2), and it will be ground dependent,” said McConnell.
“If it got very soft we might go to Musselburgh on the same day for the Triumph Hurdle Trial.
“We’d favour Leopardstown if the ground is decent.
“He was a very consistent handicapper on the Flat – and while he’d work well at home, there is a fair bit of improvement in him fitness-wise and in his schooling, so we were happy with what he did.
“I think someone from Australia was the underbidder. He cost a lot of money, but that’s what they cost now with the international markets – (and) not many go hurdling, so it’s good to get him.”
McConnell hopes Never Do Nothing can be competitive against the best of his contemporaries this year.
He said: “Dan Skelton (Allmankind) and Gary Moore (Goshen) look to have nice juveniles – while Aspire Tower is the best in Ireland we’ve seen.
“But I’m sure there’s four or five waiting to come out from the bigger yards. They’ll need to be out soon, but we’re happy with ours.”