Ronald Pump ready to thump the field in the Irish Grand National

Matthew Smith has never been down in the dumps with Ronald Pump's losing streak and is confident of a good run in the BoyleSports Irish Grand National Chase on April 18.

Trainer Matthew Smith is feeling confident Ronald Pump is approaching something like his best and is ready for the BoyleSports Irish Grand National Chase on April 18.

The nine-year-old has a losing streak as long as your arm and has not tasted victory since winning a beginners' chase at Fairyhouse but at least has course form going into the three miles, four furlong race at the same track.

"Everything is on course for the Irish National - that is the plan anyway," said Smith.

Ronald Pump does have plenty of hurdles form, especially at Fairyhouse, having finished second to Honeysuckle in the last two runnings of the Grade 1 Hatton's Grace Hurdle.

Yet his County meath trainer and connections have decided Ronald Pump will stick with chasing for now after a last time out second in the Leinster National at Naas.

"I was delighted with him the last day at Naas," said Smith. "It was a really good effort there and he came back to form with a good run.

"The horse didn't quite hold on to win it, but we were delighted with it."

Smith added: "He has always been a little bit quirky from day one. You just need to keep him in among horses when he is walking. He just got detached and started messing, but there was nothing to worry about - it is just him."

Claiming professional Liam McKenna took the reins at Naas and will keep the, taking off a valuable seven pounds in the process.

"There is no real plan after the Irish National, so we are looking to see how it goes," said Smith. "But the main thing was he came back to himself after a few disappointing runs.

"Liam would will ride him again. He got on well with him at Naas and he did nothing wrong. The boys are happy enough on leave him on."

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