Paul Nicholls’ charge was beaten just a length and three-quarters at Prestbury Park and the Ditcheat trainer has admitted he is unsure whether Silviniaco Conti was caught out by the Cheltenham hill that day.
However, the eight-year-old is reported to have come out of that race in good form and will now tackle the Betfred Bowl, in which he finished third last year, on the first day of the National meeting on Thursday week.
Nicholls told Betfair: “He’s come out of the Cheltenham race really, really well – he’s surprised us really.
“We don’t quite know in that race if he didn’t stay up the Cheltenham hill. What happened I don’t know, but he was beaten less than two lengths and ran a solid race, so we’ve decided as he’s so well, we will let him take his chance in the Betfred Bowl.
“Last season he’d had a run before Cheltenham, this year he hasn’t. It’s only one run since Christmas, hence he’s a relatively fresh horse and Aintree being a flat track over three miles and one furlong suits him very well while you could argue three (miles and) two (furlongs) at Cheltenham with the hill didn’t possibly suit him.
“He’s in good shape and schooled well this morning with Harry (Skelton) so we’re looking to run him in the Betfred Bowl.”
Meanwhile, Enda Bolger is likely to be represented by On The Fringe and Mossey Joe in the Fox Hunters’ Chase at Aintree next Thursday.
On The Fringe was well fancied for the Cheltenham equivalent and finished third behind Tammys Hill, while Mossey Joe, who only joined Bolger in January, will swerve the Grand National in preference for this.
“On The Fringe just didn’t seem to get home at Cheltenham,” said Bolger.
“Nina (Carberry, jockey) thought she had the two boys in front covered at the second-last but he just didn’t stay as well as those two (Tammys Hill and runner-up Carsonstown Boy).
“He’ll go to Liverpool along with Mossey Joe.
“Mossey Joe had a nice run round in a point-to-point and he’ll go as long as the ground doesn’t get too soft.
“The ground should be fine for On The Fringe. If it was his first run of the season I wouldn’t be keen on him running on fast ground, but he’s fit now so it’s easier for him.”