Virgilio handed spring target

Dan Skelton has identified the Mildmay Novices' Chase at Aintree's Randox Health Grand National Festival as a possible long-term target for Virgilio.

Virgilio has the Mildmay as a target at Aintree

The seven-year-old, who is two from three over hurdles at the Merseyside track, bounced back to form at Newbury on Friday when finishing second in a Grade Two contest having pulled up at the same level on his previous start at Wincanton.

While plans remain fluid as to where the six-times winner will next be seen out, the Alcester handler has his sights on making the Grade One contest in April his main end of season objective.

Skelton said: "I was really happy with him and it was always going to hard to give 15lb to the winner (Clan Des Obeaux) on the day.

"It was a testament to the horse how he rebounded back from that Wincanton run when the ground was fast.

"We might give him one more run before giving him a mid-winter break as he hates that bad ground.

"We want him to be fresh for Aintree as he won't be going to Cheltenham. His Gold Cup will be at Aintree.

"We will enter him in both the Mildmay and the Manifesto, but we are swaying towards the three-mile race unless that is red hot."

Read More at Sporting Life

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