Snow Leopardess ready to pounce over Grand National fences in Becher Chase

Grand National fans needn't wait till April for a taste of the Aintree action as Saturday's Becher Chase features the big fences. Charlie Longsdon's Snow Leopardess can bring the bite.

Charlie Longsdon is mightily excited about his Snow Leopardess taking on the mega fences of the Grand National course for Saturday's Becher Chase at Aintree.

A Grade Two winner over hurdles, the nine-year-old's racing days appeared to be over after she suffered injury when scoring in France four years ago.

But while the daughter of Martaline gave birth to a filly by Sir Percy during her spell on the sidelines, she was put back into training in 2019 and appears to have retained all her old ability.

"The plan was for her to come back in training. A lot of people said to me they don't come back as good, but she has come back as good as ever," said Longsdon.

"She loves her jumping and if she is not right she will tell you. Getting her back to this level of form is a big testament to the team with the issues she had."

Last season Snow Leopardess won a valuable handicap chase at Haydock, filled the runner-up spot in the Rowland Meyrick at Wetherby and finished fourth in the National Hunt Chase at the Cheltenham.

And having recently made a successful reappearance at Bangor, hopes are high ahead of her latest bid for big-race success on Merseyside this weekend.

Longsdon said: "The Becher Chase has always been the plan. We went to Bangor and we were lucky it turned out to be on soft ground. I thought the track might be a bit sharp, but she jumped great.

"I met up with Aidan (Coleman) in Lambourn last week. We didn't do a lot up there and we literally went over the (National) fences once. Aidan said that was fine and not to worry about doing it any more.

"The worry with a horse that is bold and brave is that if they are going to be bold and brave over the National fences it is not necessarily ideal, but she was very quick in and out over them, which I was pleased to see.

"There is no doubt it would be special if she could win on Saturday as you don't get many of those mares like her with the story and everything that has gone with it."

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