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Neil Mulholland waiting on better ground to unleash Shantou Village

Mon 12 Feb 2018

Neil Mulholland is chomping at the bit to get Shantou Village back on the track once the ground finally dries out.

The Wiltshire trainer is keeping a lid on the eight-year-old's exercise until the weather changes for the better and while Cheltenham will come too quick, Mulholland has not ruled out Aintree if the rain stops soon.

"He's grand, he's cantering away. He's in good form. The ground isn't right. It will only take us a month to get him back up but until we see constant drier weather, he's just going to stay cantering," said Mulholland.

"Last year it took us a long time to get him right, so we gave him the summer off for him to get some fresh air and get his head down on grass.

"You will see more of him this year on better ground. We won't be hiding him. It was just last year, I couldn't get him right.

"Maybe he could go to Aintree. He didn't run that well there earlier in the season, but the ground wasn't right and maybe the trip was too short.

"It won't take us long to get him back up. He's simmering away."

Shantou Village was pulled up in the Old Roan Chase at Aintree in October on his only run of the campaign so far after ending the 2016-17 season with wins at Fontwell and Sandown in April.

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