Kennedy: Outlander has no grounds for concern
Jack Kennedy is confident that testing conditions will hold no fears for Outlander in the Betfair Chase at Haydock tomorrow.
The teenage riding sensation will make his first visit to the Merseyside venue to partner Gordon Elliott's charge, who claimed his third Grade One success when bouncing back to form in the Champion Chase at Down Royal earlier this month.
The Gigginstown Stud-owned nine-year-old had disappointed on his previous three starts, including in last season's Cheltenham Gold Cup, but Kennedy is hopeful he will put his best foot forward in the first leg of the Triple Crown, which carries a £1m bonus.
"He was golden in Down Royal and all that rain won't bother him," said Kennedy. "He'll have to improve again probably, but he's in good form."
Outlander is part of a six-strong field and is the only Irish-trained contender following the expected withdrawal of Gold Cup hero Sizing John. The Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Bristol De Mai is a warm order to follow up his victory at Wetherby three weeks ago.
Colin Tizzard's stable stalwart Cue Card fell in the Charlie Hall and will be partnered by Harry Cobden for the first time, as he bids to match Kauto Star's record of four victories in the race.
Tea For Two represents Nick Williams and Lizzie Kelly, while Richard Hobson's Shantou Flyer and Traffic Fluide from Gary Moore's stable complete the line-up.