Shotgun Paddy ready for Chepstow

Emma Lavelle still hopes Shotgun Paddy will make the cut for the Coral Welsh National after 62 horses stood their ground for next Tuesday's race.

Shotgun Paddy: Will need a few to come out if he is to get a run in the Welsh National.

The nine-year-old was third in last season's renewal but needs a handful of horses above him in the handicap to come out as the maximum field size is 20.

"It is all systems go for the Welsh National. He did a lovely piece of work this morning to put him ready," said Lavelle.

"This has been the plan since Cheltenham. He will like the ground and the weather that is forecast to come in will suit.

"Five are going to have to come out if he is to get in and I would be disappointed if that didn't happen.

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"It would be absolutely gutting if he didn't get in off 10st 10lb, but it looks a race that is getting better and better in quality.

"He has been in great order at home. I would have loved to have sent him to the last Cheltenham meeting, but the rain hadn't come in time.

"We know he runs well at Chepstow as he was third in it last year and he has had a good preparation."

The two horses who finished ahead of Shotgun Paddy in last season's rearranged January renewal, Mountainous and Firebird Flyer, are already guaranteed places in the long-distance feature.

Mountainous is seeking a record third win in the race after also being successful in December 2013.

His trainer Kerry Lee also hopes to run second top-weight Bishops Road and Goodtoknow and Russe Blanc, who both need horses to come out. Her other entries are more unlikely to get into the race after 62 stood their ground at the confirmation stage.

Hennessy hero Native River heads the weights, with Neil Mulholland's Carole's Destrier, who was second to Colin Tizzard's stayer at Newbury, also in the mix.

Viva Steve and Warrantor are prominent in the ante-post market but as yet are also not certain to get in the race. Those who are include Onenightinvienna, Vyta Du Roc and Viconte Du Noyer.

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