Lexus is 'enticing' for Coneygree - Bradstock
Mark Bradstock continues to keep his cards close to his chest as to the destination of Coneygree over the Christmas period.
While apparently leaning towards the King George VI Chase when asked yesterday, the trainer mistakenly failed to enter his Cheltenham Gold Cup winner for Kempton, and he would need to be supplemented for £10,000. Such an up-front payment is not required for the Lexus Chase on December 28, and Leopardstown has come calling.
"They've enticed us quite severely to go to Ireland, it's still definitely a possibility," Bradstock said. "I don't know yet. He has got the entry for the Lexus, but we'd definitely prefer to stay in England.
"We can take a softer option, ignore Christmas and go for the Cotswold or the Denman Chase, but if he's well, and he certainly seems in that mould, we'll give it a go."
Bradstock insisted that he hadn't yet discussed the King George fee with the owners. "We don't have to make that decision until Monday week," he added.
Elsewhere, Sign Of A Victory heads 31 possibles for the Ladbroke Handicap Hurdle at Ascot on Saturday following the five-day confirmation stage.
Nicky Henderson's six-year-old, a facile winner on the Flat at Wolverhampton recently, has been left with top weight after the defection of Old Guard.
Henderson is also represented by the lightly-raced Altior, winner of its last three starts including over this course and distance. Gordon Elliott, successful with Bayan 12 months ago, can choose from Diamond King, Hostile Fire and Vercingetorix.
Other possibles from this side of the Irish Sea are Eddie Hardy's Sort It Out, the Noel Meade-trained Waxies Dargyle and two from Willie Mullins' stable, Renneti and Noble Inn. The Alan King-trained Winner Massagot is 5/1 favourite with the sponsors.
Connections of Special Tiara have decided not to appeal the result of the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown after their horse passed the post in second behind Sire De Grugy after being badly hampered at the final fence.
Trainer Henry de Bromhead felt that under the British rules it would be very difficult to overturn the local stewards' verdict. "We're not going to appeal," he confirmed.