Shotgun Paddy could run before Cheltenham
Last Updated: 28/01/14 1:01pm
Trainer Emma Lavelle is thinking of fitting in a run for Betfred Classic Chase winner Shotgun Paddy before aiming for Cheltenham or Uttoxeter in March.
The promising young staying chaser made an impressive debut in handicap company over fences, when beating Carruthers for the big prize at Warwick earlier this month, and Lavelle had thought of going straight for either the four-mile National Hunt Chase at the Cheltenham Festival on March 11 or the Betfred Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter four days later.
However, Shotgun Paddy is in such fine shape that the Andover trainer may have to get him back out on the track before then.
"Shotgun Paddy is in tremendous form and I'm just not quite sure where I'm going to run him next," she said.
"He's bouncing. I was thinking of saving him for Cheltenham or until the Midlands National, but he may have to go somewhere before then as he's so well in himself.
"I'll just see what comes along. All his owners are coming along on Saturday, so we'll have a re-run of the Warwick race about 16 times! Then we'll discuss where we go next.
"The four-miler would be the only option for him at Cheltenham and ground would be a key thing. We haven't got many that want soft ground, but he's definitely one of them."
Lavelle has not put Shotgun Paddy in the Crabbie's Grand National, entries for which closed on Tuesday, as she feels he is not ready for the ultimate challenge this season.
"He's not been entered in the National. It's a year too early for him," she said. "Highland Lodge and Court By Surprise have been entered so we'll see what happens."