Sanctuaire could aim to get back on the winning trail in the williamhill.com Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton on December 27.
The Paul Nicholls-trained six-year-old was expected to give Sprinter Sacre his biggest test to date over fences in an eagerly anticipated clash in the Tingle Creek at Sandown, but having set a scorching gallop, he was easily picked off by Nicky Henderson's stable star and his early exertions eventually cost him the runner-up spot.
Nicholls feels his charge may be a better horse in the spring, but could let him line up at Kempton over Christmas if conditions are in his favour.
"He obviously got murdered by Sprinter Sacre the other day at Sandown. He's a funny horse and I was looking at his record the other day and he's always been a bit better horse in the spring," Nicholls told Betfair.
"I wouldn't be surprised if his form improved a little bit in the spring and with his style of running, a couple of runs might get him fitter.
"I'm going to look at the Desert Orchid with him, have a look what's in it and look at the ground.
"If the ground is decent we could run him, but I don't want to bottom him on really desperate ground again."
8 December 2013Bright start for New Dawn
Twin lights up Hilly Way
Twin lights up Hilly Way
Durkan stroll for Arvika
Unioniste has Lexus aim
New One heading to International
Drowne in hospital after fall
Baby in running for Warwick
Moore sets sights on Kempton
Ex-Oxx ace Mofeed lifts Cup
Cloud and Lantern sunk in Mile
Kanaloa sizzles in Sprint
Dominant shocks The Fugue in Vase
Turner back in business
Faugheen in impressive strike
Flemenstar out of John Durkan
Unioniste claims Listed prize
Grugy great in Tingle Creek
V for victory for Henderson
Chance best in Becher thriller
Hinterland reigns in Henry VIII
Mullins strikes with Gitane
7 December 2013V for victory for Henderson
Twinlight out to show the Way
Wyck primed for big Aintree run
Dandino and Rock miss Vase run
Bec puzzler for Lavelle
Moore's Vino is vintage stuff
Mullins sets sights on Navan
Captain taking charge for Henderson
George plots Aintree gold rush
King out to reign in Henry VIII
Newcastle in talks over AW track
Sir champing at bit for Durkan date
Baby on board for Becher
6 December 2013Carberry sidelined for weekend
Dunaden 'back to his best'
Glance sights fixed on Cup glory
Strawbridge coy over Cloud future
Sire out to profit from Sacre blow
Queen awarded ROA honour
Three-month ban for Arnold
Contrite Butler must 'rebuild life'
Nicholls watching ground for Roque
Topper tests Future waters
Murphy hit by nine-day ban
Big field for Becher
Sacre forced out of Sandown return
Cadeaux team enjoying the ride
Lantern burning bright once more
5 December 2013Rasen survives wind scare
Festival switch for Mares' race
Sacre out of Tingle Creek
No luck for Jwala in Sprint draw
Aigles well ahead of fourth Cup bid
Rasen to check on wind
Butler considers ban response
Court team eyeing Huntingdon return
Oscar on course for Cheltenham
Cantlow in Cheltenham frame
Juddmonte "not for sale"
Noseda content with Grand journey
Cloud future hinges on Mile outcome
Road charts route towards Becher
Knight backs Somersby to shine