Dan Skelton is hoping better ground will help his progressive young fencer Third Time Lucki make it second time lucky against old rival Edwardstone in the Grade 2 Kingmaker Novices' Chase at Warwick on Saturday.
The seven-year-old is three from four over fences, his only defeat coming at the hands of this weekend's main opponent when finishing third in the Grade 1 Henry VIII Stakes at Sandown in December.
Third Time Lucki has since gained a confidence boosting success in a Grade 2 at Doncaster when he defeated only other finisher Do Your Job by 30 lengths.
Third Time Lucki is 15/8 to turn the tables on Edwardstone this weekend, with his Alan King-trained rival at 10/11. You can follow the action via our Sports Live Streaming service.
Trainer Dan Skelton is out to back up his win of 12 months ago in the extended two mile contest with Allmankind.
He said: "I reckon we can turn the tables this weekend with the ground in our favour. If it went too soft then I won't run him and the advantage flicks to Edwardstone at that point. I believe having seen more of our horse, he's effective when he can use all of his speed, like at Doncaster."
He added: "As much as the ground was a little soft for us at Sandown, it was his third quick run at the start of the season, which was part of our undoing. I was happy with what I saw in the Lightning Novices' at Doncaster last time. Warwick will suit and we've worked out how to ride him now."
On the decision not to go straight for the Arkle, for which he is a 7/1 chance, the trainer added: "I can just envisage a scenario where the ground at Cheltenham is very soft."