Evan Williams is praying conditions improve by Saturday as he is "desperate" to get a run into his John Smith's Grand National hope Cappa Bleu.
The Llancarfan trainer took last season's Aintree fourth out of a planned outing at Exeter because of the heavy ground., but reports him to be ready to return to the track for the first time since he was second on his seasonal debut at Carlisle in November.
Cappa Bleu could reappear at Ascot in the Weatherbys Hamilton Insurance Chase, while he also holds an entry in the Betfred Grand National Trial at Haydock on Saturday.
"He's in the National Trial which I wouldn't be keen to take on, but he will be declared at the five-day stage," said Williams.
"He will also be entered at Ascot on Saturday in a race he was third in last year, a three-mile handicap. That's where I would like to go, weather permitting.
"I'm desperate to run him. It's got to the stage now where I'm starting to need to run him. He could do with a run. It would be nice if we could slot him in there somewhere."
Testing ground saw Williams withdraw Court Minstrel from Saturday's Betfair Hurdle at Newbury, but the trainer is not as worried about getting him back on to the track in a hurry.
"He's absolutely fine. We want a bit of decent ground," he said.
"There are plenty of options and I'm not too worried about him because there are so many places he can go in the spring when the ground gets better. I wouldn't run him on that ground so I worked instead on Saturday as I needed to work him because he didn't run.
"There are no problems with him but I will not run him on that ground. I don't think he handled it in the Tolworth (fourth to Melodic Rendezvous) and that form is looking increasingly very good, so I'm going to be patient with him."
31 October 2014Day to remember for Ellison
Johnson remains under observation
Conti chasing second Charlie Hall
Terror scares Newmarket rivals
Filleule faces Champion test
Terror scares off Newmarket rivals
Sgt far from Reckless at Uttoxeter
Little King wears Down Royal crown
Nicholls goes on Charm offensive
Fishers angling for Wetherby prize
Lavelle star Bec in business
Weld out to break new ground
Osborne ready to 'roll the dice'
Dank bids to sign off on a high
Turf glory in sight for Telescope
Red Ed upbeat about Cadeaux
Aktabantay out of Breeders' Cup
Tearless secures Good Friday ticket
Overnight stay for Johnson
Crawford banks on Izzini progress
Toast could make Spencer think
Road charts route to Royal riches
Grece excels at Saint-Cloud
Hawk given Greatwood option
Hannon: Early speed key for Osaila
30 October 2014Tearless takes Lingfield honours
Johnson taken to hospital
Royal summons for Apache
Bowe takes aim at WKD bullseye
Hootenanny 'smoking' for BC mission
Avenue roads lead to Newmarket
Shu to be kept busy
Scu sweet on Sensation Ascot raid
Murtagh succumbs to Cup charms
Dandino to stay in Australia
Glance denied Mackinnon defence
Bailey ace rules Supreme at Taunton
O'Brien hit by Magician blow
Diablo in big-race picture
Buckley raises Toast to Osborne
Pastille seeking four-timer
Conti all set for Charlie Hall
Barnes out to storm Saint-Cloud
Williams issues Buywise warning
Lynam reveals Slade stalls fears
29 October 2014Lame Magician out of Breeders' Cup
Diablo in big-race picture
Mullins enters strong Hennessy team
Damaged hock behind Estid reverse
Eckhart team rocked by injury blow
Hunt Ball makes Power play
Morgiana a T bone of contention
Kirby ponders Buttons French raid
Glance camp turn to Williams
Wohler trusts 'professional' Moore
Red alert to Cup challenge
Head targets more Mile glory
Mile hope Toronado in 'great form'
Telescope camp banking on Moore
Twiston-Davies link excites Moore
Flying third to Bob on hurdling bow
Harden to test top staying waters
Godolphin take share in Belardo
Mullins has big guns at Down Royal
Annacotty set for Kempton return
Powell and Bradley cleared
28 October 2014Fingal camp on weather watch
More injury woe for Popham
Dickin unveils Thomas gameplan
Power stalls in Flemington spin
Toast drawn nine in BC Classic
My Ambivalent passed fit by vets
Harry out to bring House down
Three and easy for ton-up Hanagan
Wood carves out Galway verdict
More Of That in Wetherby frame
Big guns confirmed for Charlie Hall
Byron pencilled in for Far East
Newbury reverts to original title
Magician to stay in the US