Samcro begins 'long road to redemption' on Monday with Galway Plate a target
Eddie O’Leary has revealed dual Cheltenham festival hero Samcro will be kept on the go this summer with Monday's meeting at Killarney to be his first port of call.
The Galway Plate is the long-term target for Samcro, who will bid to put disappointing efforts in the Savills and Ryanair Chases behind him when he tackles the Grade 3 An Riocht Chase.
Samcro was found to have a dirty sinus after disappointing at Cheltenham and O’Leary is hoping the horse can put his problems behind him this summer.
"He will stay in training this summer with the Galway Plate being the aim as long as he stays healthy," O'Leary said. "It’s a long road to redemption but it’s all about keeping him healthy.
"If we get a clear run this summer he could go for the Galway Plate but it has been very much stop-start with him lately.
"He will run at Killarney and Galway will be top of the agenda for him after that. He’d probably have a big weight to carry in the Plate but hopefully he gets some sort of a chance.
“He was never an unhealthy horse in his early days and it’s all Mickey Mouse stuff that’s hindering him. A bad scope here, a dirty sinus there, he actually pulled up at Cheltenham because he had a dirty sinus. It was a horrendous run but his sinus was absolutely rotten afterwards.
"The good Samcro has as much talent as Don Cossack did but unfortunately it’s becoming harder and harder to keep him right."
Gigginstown will keep a small team of horses on the go this summer, the majority of which will end up at the Doncaster horses-in-training sale later in the year.
However, neither Samcro nor the Joseph O’Brien-trained pair Embittered and Assemble will be heading to the sales and O’Leary is hopeful they have nice summer campaigns.
He said: “Embittered could develop into a nice summer novice over fences while Assemble could be one for the Plate.
"Both horses should be happier on nicer ground. They’re probably the best of what we will keep in training for the summer along with the big lad [Samcro]."
For all our exclusive free bet offers and must-have daily promotions click the free bets button or go to racingpost.com/freebets