Haydock aim for Clouds but door open for Thistle clash

Many Clouds: 2015 National hero impressed at Aintree last time

PICTURE: John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos) Haydock option
for Many Clouds
By James Burn 7:55AM 1 JAN 2017

HAYDOCK's Peter Marsh Handicap Chase on January 21 will be Randox Health Grand National favourite Many Clouds's likely next race, but trainer Oliver Sherwood has left the door open for a clash with Thistlecrack at Cheltenham a week later.

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Successful over the sport's most famous fences in 2015, the Trevor Hemmings-owned Many Clouds was impressive in a Listed chase at Aintree last month and had been pencilled in for a trip to Ireland for the Lexus Chase over Christmas.

However, he swerved that engagement and Sherwood is eyeing Haydock, although warned testing conditions would make the handsome chaser's participation unlikely there.

Should that be the case, a trip to Cheltenham seven days later for the Betbright Trial Cotswold Chase – in which he might meet brilliant 32Red King George VI Chase winner Thistlecrack – could be on the cards.

"Clouds is great," said Sherwood, whose stable star is generally 16-1 for the National.

"He will possibly go to Haydock on January 21, but would not run if the ground was bottomless, or we could take on Thistlecrack. Not many will run there and we could go round and finish second."

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