Racing’s up-and-coming star Constitution Hill makes his eagerly-awaited return in the Coral Hurdle at Ascot this afternoon, live on Sky Sports Racing.
2.40 Ascot – Constitution Hill tests Champion Hurdle credentials
Nicky Henderson’s star hurdler Constitution Hill will look to enhance his Champion Hurdle hopes with victory in the Grade Two Coral Ascot Hurdle (2:40).
The five-year-old takes on five rivals in his first step outside of novice company, and is already as short as 5/4 for the Cheltenham Festival hurdling showpiece next March.
The most likely challenger is Brewin’upastorm for Olly Murphy, who has some classy form in the book although he blundered when favourite at Aintree two weeks ago.
Gary Moore’s enigmatic dual-purpose horse Goshen also lines up after a poor run over fences last time out at this track.
2.05 Ascot – L’Homme Presse on first step to Gold Cup
Venetia Williams’ Group One winner L’Homme Presse will make his first step towards the Cheltenham Gold Cup in his seasonal comeback in the Grade Two Chanelle Pharma 1965 Chase (2:05).
L’Homme Presse was spectacular last season with a record of six wins in seven starts, including victory in the Brown Advisory’ Novices Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
The road back to that meeting starts here, although owner Andy Edwards has warned that his gelding might not be 100 per cent for the outing.
The contenders in opposition include Paul Nicholls’ Saint Calvados, who is now owned and ridden by David Maxwell.
3.15 Ascot – Arkle hero concedes weight all-round
Last year’s Arkle winner Edwardstone will bid to carry a lofty weight to victory in the Jim Barry Wines Hurst Park Handicap Chase (3:15), in what will be his first try outside of novice company over fences for Alan King.
It would be an excellent performance from the eight-year-old to defy a mark of 161, who was pulled out of the Shloer Chase last weekend at Cheltenham due to the ground.
Boothill is one to note from the Harry Fry yard and looks to be on the improve, whilst Thyme White won over the course and distance last month for Paul Nicholls.
You can’t discount Frero Banbou with likely soft ground for Venetia Williams as well as Third Time Lucki out of the Dan Skelton yard.
Watch every race from Ascot, Lingfield and Wolverhampton live on Sky Sports Racing on Saturday, November 19.