Oscar goes for Long Walk prize
The Tom Mullins-trained Oscar Dan Dan is the sole Irish representative among ten possibles in the BGC Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot on Saturday.
The eight-year-old made a successful start to his campaign with a comfortable four-length win over Jumbo Rio in Grade Two company at Navan last month.
He could face Paul Nicholls' staying star Big Buck's, who may bids to win the top-class contest for the second year running.
The Paul Nicholls-trained seven-year-old is undefeated in nine starts over the smaller obstacles since unseating his rider in the Hennessy Gold Cup in November 2008.
The Ditcheat handler and owner Andy Stewart have also left in Celestial Halo. He was third to Karabak in the Relkeel Hurdle at Cheltenham at the weekend.
Big Buck's beat Duc De Regniere on his reappearance in the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury last month and Nicky Henderson's charge could reoppose. The Seven Barrows trainer has another possible runner in Carole's Legacy.
Kayf Aramis and Restless Harry still hold entries despite being behind Celestial Halo in sixth and seventh slots at Cheltenham.
David Pipe's old campaigner Lough Derg took this prize in 2007 and could try again, while Afsoun and Arcalis make up the acceptors.