Anthony Honeyball has not ruled out running Sam Brown in next month’s Sodexo Reynoldstown Novices’ Chase at Ascot.
A step up to three miles in the Grade Two contest on February 15 could be on the agenda for the eight-year-old after he maintained his unbeaten record over fences with victory at the same level at Haydock on Saturday.
While Honeyball is keen to continue to make up for lost time with Sam Brown, he would be equally as content to bypass Ascot and head straight to the RSA Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
Honeyball said: “If it was heavy ground at Ascot and he was ticking every box, we would probably take our chance and go.
“We’ve won a novice chase and a Grade Two, so we have caught up with his chasing career and are exactly where we want to be.
“We will just tick him over for the next four weeks and if the Reynoldstown doesn’t work out, we will work towards the RSA.
“I would like to run in that if it is soft ground and think about other big races in the spring.”
Reflecting on Sam Brown’s most recent success, Honeyball added: “He is a three-mile horse and he was back over two and a half, plus he made a few mistakes.
“The ground wasn’t as heavy as it was described, so everything was against him at Haydock.
“He had to win ugly and his class saw him through.”
A drop in both class and trip could be on the cards for stablemate Midnight Tune following her no-show in the Grade Two Peter Marsh Chase at the Merseyside track.
Honeyball has earmarked the Listed Join Racing TV Now Mares’ Chase at Exeter on February 9 as possible target for the nine-year-old.
He said: “I thought she went well for 80 per cent of the race at Haydock, but she didn’t finish off as she should have done.
“If she is well, I will be tempted to run her at Exeter in a Listed race next month.”
Though disappointed with Midnight Tune’s latest effort, it is not the first time Honeyball has been in this position.
He added: “Two years ago we went all guns blazing to the Warfield at Ascot and she did the same and bombed out. We later found out she had a bladder infection.
“The vet checked her over on Monday and said there was enough cause to flush it out again, so we have done that, scoped her and given her a trach wash.”