Politologue can have the last word in King George debate at Kempton
There are plenty of question marks over every participant in an intriguing 32Red King George VI Chase at Kempton today - and it may pay to side with Politologue to lower some lofty colours.
John Hales' grey has plenty to prove himself, of course, when it comes to the necessary stamina for his first attempt at three miles.
There are no such doubts on that score at least for favourite Might Bite or Native River - who served up a race for the ages in last season's Cheltenham Gold Cup.
That was then and this is now, though - and more significantly perhaps, that was there and this is here.
Winners need to stay at Kempton on Boxing Day, too, but not as thoroughly as over a quarter-mile further at Cheltenham.
For that reason, Native River's grinding tactics may secure him only an honourable place, while Might Bite's inexplicably bad tangle with the Haydock fences on his reappearance in last month's Betfair Chase makes it a leap of faith to expect him to reproduce his best.
It is also worth remembering that last year's King George winner took a horrific fall when he had the Grade One novice sewn up here a year earlier.
Politologue is arguably not as talented as any of the aaforementioned or, for that matter, fragile northerner Waiting Patiently, returning hero Thistlecrack or the even more injury-plagued former Gold Cup winner Coneygree.
But after hinting at stamina reserves over shorter trips in his back-to-back wins over two very speedy horses at Aintree in April and then on his return at Ascot last month, Politologue presents a persuasive case.