Queen Mother Champion Chase Hero Altior Heads Terrific Tingle Creek Chase Ten
Queen Mother Champion Chase winner Altior looks set to make his seasonal debut in the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown on Saturday.
The Nicky Henderson trained superstar is the headline name on the list of ten entries for the reopened race with the horse looking to continue his remarkable unbeaten run.
The 8-year-old horse will go into the race at the Esher track aiming to claim his 15th race on the bounce and widely regarded as the best horse in training. The Tingle Creek has long been the early season target for the double Cheltenham Festival winner but it might not be an easy assignment first time out with a host of quality names also engaged at this stage.
Possible opponents for the likely favourite include Saint Calvados, who beat Footpad in Ireland last month and Sceau Royal, who impressed at Cheltenham during the November meeting when winning the Shloer Chase.
There is also a potential invasion from Ireland to consider with Willie Mullins currently having Min, Great Field and Un De Sceaux entered for the Sandown Grade 1 race, with all three capable of running well at the highest level.
All eyes will of course be on Altior though as he takes the first step on the road to the Cheltenham Festival once again with a second Queen Mother Champipn Chase win clearly the aim for a horse who is fast becoming one of the best in recent history.
Few races can match the Tingle Creek for history and prestige with Moscow Flyer, Sprinter Sacre and Master Minded just three of the high profile winners of the contest this century and punters will be hoping the name of Altior can be added to that famous list of racing results.
✅Un De Sceaux