sport

Aintree Appeal for Lavelle

Emma Lavelle has set her sights on a trip to Aintree in April with Fox Appeal, rather than targeting the Cheltenham Festival.

The six-year-old was a 10-length winner in Grade Two company at Ascot before Christmas and has a couple of options before a planned run at the Grand National meeting in the spring.

"The ultimate aim is the two-and-a-half-mile novice chase at Aintree and we'll work back from there," said Lavelle.

"There's a race at Sandown for him, but he's a very fresh horse and we may even take him to Doncaster for the Grade Two, the Lightning."

Meanwhile, the trainer will wait to see Junction Fourteen's revised handicap mark before mapping out a plan for her charge.

The four-year-old was an 11-length winner at Kempton on Boxing Day, following up a narrow victory at Fontwell on his previous start.

Lavelle is now anticipating a jump up the handicap and could consider a step up in grade for Junction Fourteen.

"His previous run at Fontwell had gone under the radar because he was still very green and unbalanced so was probably value for a lot more," said Lavelle.

"Leighton (Aspell) said he was still learning to race on an even keel so there could be more to come.

"We're in the handicapper's hands but I fear he'll be getting a hefty rise so whether it's another handicap or up in grade, we'll have to see.

"That was over two-five but he bounded clear and you'd say he's stay further so we've got options over trips, he travels well also, so we're not restricted."