Glen Forsa could use the Shloer Chase at Cheltenham next month as a stepping stone towards a return to the top table.
The Grade Two contest on November 17 has been earmarked as a possible starting point by connections of the Mick Channon-trained seven-year-old along with the Hurst Park Handicap Chase and the Christy 1965 Chase at Ascot six days later.
After running out an emphatic winner of the rearranged Kingmaker Novices’ Chase at Sandown in February the Tim Radford-owned gelding failed to complete his next two starts after unseating in the Arkle at Cheltenham before pulling up in the Manifesto Novices’ Chase at Aintree.
Jack Channon, son and assistant trainer, said: “Cheltenham was a bit of a mess as we had that big downpour there then he made the mistake and unseated Johnny (Burke).
“He was travelling great at Aintree and he made one bad mistake that completely knocked the stuffing out of him.
“We know he has the ability there it is just about getting the confidence back into him. Tim Radford, his owner, is keen to go to the Shloer as he would like him to be a Champion Chase horse.
“Off his mark of 150 you would like to think he could win one of those big handicaps though. The race at Ascot is a nice pot to win and we are certainly looking at it and there is also the 1965 Chase there as well.”
What route Glen Forsa will take is dependant on how his works goes over the next few weeks.
Channon added: “All options are open at the moment as he has got a couple of really good bits of work to do and a couple of bits of schooling.
“Where we go will depend on how everything goes over the next couple of weeks.”
Stablemate Mister Whitaker, who is also owned by Radford, could bid to back up his Grade Two success at Cheltenham in April in the Fitzdares Chase, better known as the Peterborough Chase, at Huntingdon in December.
Channon added: “He started off the season in great form, then he didn’t run badly at Ascot and I thought he was flying going into the Cheltenham Festival but he just got stuck in behind and never jumped a fence or travelled that day.
“It was good to go see him do the business in a Grade Two back there and while it might not have been championship strength, he did it nicely.
“I think this horse might be more of a three-miler and he may get a Ladbrokes Trophy entry but we will probably look at the Peterborough Chase to start off with.”
Looking further down the line an entry in next year’s Randox Health Grand National at Aintree could also enter the picture.
Channon added: “I felt last season he was a three-miler and I think he will develop into one this season.
“Tim is keen to give him an entry in the Grand National but that is a long way off and we will keep our options open.”