Morney Wing
Image reproduced with the kind permission of Sandown Park Racecourse

Charlie Mann is leaning towards running Morney Wing in the Higos Insurance Services Somerset National Handicap Chase at Wincanton later this month.

Plans are in place to drop the eight-year-old down in trip for a tilt at the three-and-a-quarter-mile contest on January 19, provided conditions are suitable.

The former Sandra Hughes-trained gelding showed his appetite for a severe stamina test when winning this year’s Sussex National at Plumpton.

Mann said: “Morney Wing jumped very well and was good at Plumpton. He has come out of that race well and he will probably go for the Somerset National at Wincanton if the ground is soft enough.

“His target next month will either be the Eider Chase or the Grand National Trial at Haydock. He will stay in all those long-distance chases. The Midlands National is another target.”

Although the Lambourn handler has mapped out plans for the rest of this season, he already knows where he would like the four-times race winner to end up next term.

Mann said: “I’d like to have got him qualified for this year’s Grand National, but he won’t get in as he is too low in the weights.

“He jumps well and will make a good National horse, so maybe next season we can look at that.”

Stablemate Some Kinda Lama faces a race against time in order to make it to the Cheltenham Festival for a shot at the Pertemps Network Final.

The six-year-old was denied a hat-trick of wins on his most recent start, when finishing second in a qualifying race for the Listed prize at Sandown last month.

Mann said: “He won his first two races then was second at Sandown on ground he didn’t like. He has had a hobday operation as the poor horse couldn’t breathe properly at Sandown.

“We have always thought a lot of him and he will be a better horse when he comes back.

“I’d like to get him ready for Cheltenham, but I am not sure if I have enough time for that. He will certainly go to Aintree and possibly Punchestown as well.”