Donald McCain's family will forever be synonymous with the Grand National, but the Cheshire-based trainer admits the Cheltenham Festival is now top of his priority list.
His late father Ginger will always be associated with Aintree and in particular the exploits of the legendary Red Rum, but the burgeoning McCain empire has attracted higher profile owners of late - and a better team of racehorses.
"From Christmas onwards you are starting to think about getting horses ready for Cheltenham. We were lucky to have a winner with our first runner there (Cloudy Lane, 2007 Kim Muir), which was great, but things have been a bit tougher since," said McCain.
"We've had six winners there altogether now, which is great, and I think it's got to the stage where we need to have winners at Cheltenham. Aintree is a special place for us, but we almost look at having winners there as a bonus. If you have a winner there we really enjoy it."
McCain has a strong team assembled, headed by Arkle-bound Overturn, World Hurdle contender Peddlers Cross and Champion Hurdle challenger Cinders And Ashes, and he nominates Our Mick as his best chance of winning one of the handicaps.
He said: "He was third in the JLT last year as a novice and made a couple of bad mistakes, but ran a screamer. He's only a little bit higher in the weights and was running a nice race at Cheltenham the other week when Jason (Maguire) decided to jump off him! He's in great nick and I'll be expecting a big run."
Super Duty was only narrowly denied by the David Pipe-trained Goulanes in the Towton Novices' Chase at Wetherby last time and although he has handicap engagements at Cheltenham, McCain is leaning towards a tilt at the RSA Chase.
He went on: "I've been very tempted just to concentrate on the Kim Muir, but I'm starting to think strongly about running him in the RSA. He's never had his ground this year and was giving 7lb to David's horse the other day. He would have to carry nearly top weight in the Kim Muir. He's as tough as nails."
Son Of Flicka won part-owner Phil Williams the best part of a million pounds when landing last year's Coral Cup and McCain said: "He's a grand little horse and I think he's a pound or two higher than what he won off last year. He'll probably run in the Coral Cup, but we'll keep our options open for now."
Other possible runners are Diamond King (Champion Bumper), Any Given Day, Bourne and Hollow Tree (handicap hurdles), Counsel (Fred Winter), Desert Cry (Jewson), Cloudy Lane (Foxhunter) and She Ranks Me (OLBG Mares' Hurdle or Neptune).
22 October 2014Gosden a Fan of Newmarket scorer
Northern aces face off in Cumbria
December date for Balding memorial
Murphy plagued by shoulder injury
Dynaste charts direct Haydock route
O'Brien outlines Breeders' plans
Deputy outgunned at Fontwell
Wetherby-bound Taquin to duck Power
Whisky chasing Power spoils
High hopes for Adelaide run
Burke maps out Odeliz targets
Present sights set on Power prize
Gilgamboa waits on ground
New category for all-weather champs
Moviesta has sales date
National aim for O'Neill star
Cheltenham on Ginge agenda
Lewis eyeing Dubai success
Henderson handed Ascot role
Dandino misses Cup date
Panther given Breeders' go-ahead
Plain sailing for perfect Storm
Big Easy sets sail for Open fixture
Hall monitored for Giant Bolster
Stomachion in November frame
Hughes revels in 'sweet' success
BHA moves to address small fields
Connell turns to Heskin
Integral to race on next year
21 October 2014Storm breezes to Exeter victory
Moore concedes title to Hughes
Meade maps out gameplan for stars
Pele poised to tackle Hennessy
O'Neill sure of Taquin redemption
Heron seeking Great prize
Court to go on Trial
Saviour blow for Skelton
Dan makes chase debut
Moore waits on Grugy decision
O'Neill outlines That choices
Conn possible for Auction bid
Power team weigh up options
Bangor cancel schooling card
No rushing back for Long Run
Dynaste leads Old Roan contenders
Grands Crus retired
Exciting Berlais heads to Chepstow
Force handed Hong Kong mission
Park favourite for Trophy hunt
Al Kazeem team eye Hong Kong trip
Commemorative bound for Breeders'
Slade eyeing victorious swansong
20 October 2014Chelmsford City handed 58 fixtures
Alderwood to take two-mile test
Dynaste leads Old Roan contenders
Hennessy aim for Clouds
Fiesolana on Breeders' trail
High-class possibilities for Trophy
Chelmsford City handed 57 fixtures
French option for Maarek
Billy back for chasing bow
Judge to bid for Breeders' glory
Pipe mulls Moon target
High hopes for Holywell
Judge in Breeders' frame
Hill stars for Stoute and Moore
Gabriel lifts Garnet for Deegan
New One back with a win
Light career hangs in balance
Stars shines on hurdling debut
King big guns ready to start
Tullius camp consider options
Doyle unlikely to appeal Ascot ban
Mullins prepares formidable team
19 October 2014New One breezes to victory
Lavelle has Becher plan for Lodge
Riches heading on road north
Down Royal plan for Tiger
New makes Kempton return
Panther hunting Canadian prize