Sizing faces big test
Henry De Bromhead hopes to find out what the rest of the season holds for his Arkle winner Sizing Europe when he takes on Kauto Star in the JNwine.com Champion Chase at Down Royal.
The eight-year-old stepped up to two miles seven furlongs for his seasonal debut at Punchestown last month but could finish only second, beaten seven lengths, to China Rock, who renews rivalry.
"He's in great form. We want to find out now if he stays three miles and see how he gets on over the trip," said the trainer.
"Kauto Star is coming over, but this is a race that suits our programme, so we are taking him on. We'll see where we are after this."
Laurence Butler reports Trafford Lad to be in good form as the classy chaser has his first race since finishing third to Tranquil Sea and Joncol over a year ago.
"He's been off since October 31 last year. We had a setback with him but he's in good form," said the County Kilkenny permit holder.
"We're more than happy with him. It'll be nice to see him back on the track and he's going to improve from the run. I just hope he runs well and comes home safe and sound. He's as ready as we can have him, but without having a run."
Michael Hourigan is just hoping Mossbank comes back in one piece when he returns to the fray after 927 days off the track.
The County Limerick trainer has had the 2007 Lexus Chase and 2008 Ryanair Chase second ready to run for a while, but has taken him out of a couple of intended engagements because the ground has not been suitable.
He said: "We're just hoping he comes back safe and sound. He hasn't run for over 900 days so it's a big ask. I'm happy enough with the ground. It's a long time since he ran so he's bound to be rusty."