Value to run in Galway Plate
Last Updated: 21/07/14 6:00pm
Tony McCoy holds the Plate after winning the race 12 months ago aboard Carlingford Lough.
John Butler has given Minella For Value the green light to take his chance in next week's thetote.com Galway Plate.
The eight-year-old has been allotted 11st in the initial weights for the €120,000 steeplechase and while Butler admits it would be a dream to win the race, he is under no illusions as to the size of the task.
He said: "It would be fantastic just to finish in the places, but it's the stuff of dreams to think he can go and win it.
"I think 11st is a nice racing weight and he'll go to Southwell tomorrow (Tuesday) for a pipe opener.
"He'll also get an entry for a race on the Tuesday of the Festival just in case they are forecast rain for Wednesday."
Available at 18/1 with Sky Bet for the valuable handicap on Wednesday week, Minella For Value ran out when still well in contention in the John Smith's Summer Cup at Uttoxeter last month, but Butler is confident he will put that mishap behind him.
He added: "He ran out of room in the Summer Cup and had no where else to go.
"It was unfortunate because he was running a nice race at the time. It's not an ideal preparation but he's only had four runs from me and could still be improving.
"We would prefer the ground coming up on the quicker side of good, but we're excited about the prospect of travelling over for such a big race and although it will be hellish competitive, it will be a great experience for him."
At the head of the weights is Kid Cassidy (11st 10lb), second in the Grand Annual at Cheltenham in 2013 and the only horse to have lowered the colours of Sire De Grugy last season.
JP McManus is likely to be typically well represented with It's A Gimme (10st 6lb), the impressive winner of the Summer Plate at Market Rasen on Saturday, a 10-1 chance for the owner at present.
McManus also has Alderwood (11st 4lb), Vulcanite (11st 2lb) and Competitive Edge (10st 12lb) among a strong attack on this year's prize.
Other contenders include the Rebecca Curtis-trained The Romford Pele (11st 5lb), Jim Culloty's Cheltenham Festival winner Spring Heeled (11st 4lb) and Donald McCain's Kie (10st 12lb).