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Channon aims Somersby at Queen Mother Champion Chase

Updated: Friday, 01 Mar 2013 21:33 | Comments

The tripless Somersby (near side) will face the mighty Sprinter Sacre in Wednesday's feature race at the Cheltenham Festival
The tripless Somersby (near side) will face the mighty Sprinter Sacre in Wednesday's feature race at the Cheltenham Festival

Mick Channon has confirmed Somersby will come back in distance for a tilt at the Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.

Narrowly beaten in the 2010 Arkle and fifth in the Champion Chase a year later, Somersby has been largely campaigned over longer trips since, but did win last year's two-mile-one-furlong Victor Chandler Chase at Ascot.

He was a well beaten third behind red-hot Queen Mother favourite Sprinter Sacre at Cheltenham in late January, but having seemingly failed to get home over further in last month's Betfair Ascot Chase, he is set for a return to the minimum distance.

While he will clearly have his work cut out to beat Nicky Henderson's market leader, Somersby could pick up some prize-money in what is sure to be a small field.

"He came out of Ascot grand and we've decided we're going to go for the big one with him - the Queen Mother," said Channon.

"We were happy enough with his last run. He was beaten eight lengths.

"He travelled into the race very strongly, but it looked like he didn't stay. He moved into it well and then found nothing off the bridle.

"It's not the end of the world, he seems in good form so we'll go to Cheltenham and see how he gets on."

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