Nicky Henderson has again confirmed that his exciting novice chaser Long Run will most likely target the RSA Chase over three miles rather than a tilt at the Irish Independent Arkle Challenge Trophy at this year’s Cheltenham festival.
Long Run currently a 6-1 chance with Ladbrokes for the RSA Chase makes his second start over fences at Warwick on Saturday in the Grade 2 Kingmaker Novices’ Chase over two miles, widely tipped as a prep race for the Arkle Trophy.
However, his trainer insists that he is merely looking after the French import and that he will be lining up against stablemate Punchestowns in the three mile novice showpiece at Cheltenham.
“He already has quite a few miles on the clock for a five-year-old and we are just trying to get another race over fences in him. A lot of three mile races in this ground would take a lot out of a young horse and there is no need to do that, so therefore a go over two miles would be the best thing for him at this stage.
“He has loads of natural speed so two miles won’t be a problem but this isn’t a prep race for a tilt at the Arkle. I’m 99% sure that the RSA Chase is what he will run in at the festival” stated the Lambourn trainer.
Long Run was last seen when annihilating a good field at Kempton in the Feltham Novices’ Chase over three miles on Boxing Day. Tazbar, a distant second that day, has since franked the form with a comfortable win in a competitive race last weekend at Doncaster.
Punchestowns is currently 7-2 favourite for the RSA Chase, for all the latest odds for this year’s Cheltenham festival follow this link to Ladbrokes.