Trainer Harry Whittington has confirmed stable star Saint Calvados will be stepped up in trip after his solid display in the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown last weekend.
The five-year-old was thrown in at the deep end on Saturday after being put up against Nicky Henderson’s Altior.
Altior powered home after holding off Willie Mullins’ Un De Sceaux, while Saint Calvados did enough to finish third ahead of Sceau Royal.
Whittington’s charge has still not finished outside the top four since making his debut in March 2017, with Saint Calvados winning five times in eight races.
Saint Calvados is set to be given more experience going right-handed and Whittington is happy with his progress.
“He’s absolutely fine, he’s all good,” he said. “He ran with credit at the end of the day and obviously it was the first time he’d been right-handed.
“He hung a bit left down the back straight and probably got caught out by his inexperience, but he stayed on well to beat Sceau Royal for third place.
“It was a solid effort. He’s still got a very bright future and we’ll probably step him up in trip now.
“We’ll let the dust settle and have a look. There’s a Listed race over two and a half at Kempton in January. It will probably be a good thing to take him right-handed down in grade, and then we will just take it from there.”
Saint Calvados is still being considered for the Champion Chase at the Cheltenham Festival in 2019. Altior remains 1.67 favourite, with Saint Calvados 26.00 to pull off a shock win.