Competitive Mann relishing chance to get back in the saddle at Chepstow
The chasing debut of the highly touted Finian's Oscar will not be the only attraction on Chepstow's bill on Saturday as a host of former jockeys dust off their breeches for the charity legends race, which raises funds for the Bob Champion Cancer Trust.
Entries for Saturday and Sunday's cards at Chepstow have jumps fans drooling, but there is an extra attraction before racing when the likes of Graham Bradley, Sam Thomas and Kevin Mooney will be in action.
The riders also include Lambourn trainer Charlie Mann, who was forced to retire from riding in 1989 after breaking his neck but still managed to partner Its A Snip to victory in the Pardubice six years later.
Joking he is "only 35", Mann is relishing the opportunity to put one over on his former weighing room colleagues, especially with some local bragging rights at stake.
He said: "Seven of the jockeys are in Lambourn; Bradley, Sean Curran, Jimmy Duggan, Rodney Farrant, myself, Kevin Mooney and Sam Thomas.
"I've not had to lose any weight, but have just been on the Equicizer with Dave Crosse and am riding out two lots a day so I'm fit and ready to go.
"Apparently Jimmy Duggan has lost three and a half stone, but I bloody ride out every day anyway!
"I rode in one of these charity races a long time ago – 20 years or so – and it should be good craic, and very interesting."
Mann, keeping his fingers crossed the ground is on the decent side for his mount Sureness, added: "I think Chepstow is sold out because of this race – Welsh National day has nothing on this!
"There are some real old faces there and I'd like to finish in front of all of them. The competitive streak comes out in you again, but I would like to finish in front of Brad and Duggan."