Gold Cup option for Mon Mome

VENETIA Williams has raised the possibility of Mon Mome running in the totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup ahead of the defence of his John Smith's Grand National crown on 10 April.

The shock 100-1 winner of last year's Aintree highlight will have his third outing of the campaign in the Peter Marsh Chase at Haydock this weekend, after which the blue riband is a possibility.

Trainer Williams said: "I was going to run him in the Welsh National but didn't as I felt the ground was still frosted.

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"The Classic Chase was then called off at Warwick so the weather has disrupted his schedule somewhat.

"There is every chance he may join Miko De Beauchene in the Blue Square Gold Cup at Haydock next month. He will also have an entry in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. That isn't a target as such, but it is an option.

"I hope he runs a good race at the weekend. It looks very competitive on paper and if you look at the way the horses have run the last few days then we are a bit behind."

Williams became just the second female trainer of a Grand National winner last April, with Mon Mome a 25-1 with totesport to become the first since Red Rum in 1973-74 to win back-to-back renewals.

The ten-year-old was one of eight horses paraded at Williams' Herefordshire base yesterday at a media event to launch the 2010 renewal of the world-famous race.

Williams said: "He is the most insignificant-looking horse of the eight we have seen today. He is small, has an usual action and is wide behind. But he is intellectually abundant and has stamina. I think it was a combination of those two traits that allowed him to streak away after the final fence at Aintree.

"I was surprised how he put 12 lengths between himself and the others in such a short space of time. He is an individual and idiosyncratic. He sometimes does not enjoy himself but he certainly enjoyed himself at Aintree.

"I am hoping to run him at Haydock this weekend."