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    Jonbon Poised for Formidable Challenge in Champion Chase
Jonbon Poised for Formidable Challenge in Champion Chase
Jonbon with jockey Aidan Coleman at Warwick — Healy Racing

Jonbon Poised for Formidable Challenge in Champion Chase

Nicky Henderson expresses confidence in Jonbon's chances against El Fabiolo in the Champion Chase. 

Renowned trainer Nicky Henderson remains upbeat about Jonbon's prospects as he prepares to face off against familiar rival El Fabiolo for the third time at the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham this Wednesday.

Their rivalry dates back to their initial encounter in April 2022 at Aintree, where Jonbon narrowly triumphed in a Grade One novice hurdle. However, El Fabiolo turned the tables a year later by claiming an emphatic victory in the Arkle Trophy.

Despite a planned clash in January's Clarence House Chase being disrupted by racing cancellations, both horses have continued their impressive form this season. Jonbon secured wins in the Shloer Chase and the Tingle Creek, while El Fabiolo emerged victorious in the Hilly Way at Cork and remained unbeaten over fences at the Dublin Racing Festival.

Henderson expressed disappointment over the missed opportunity at Ascot but remains optimistic about Jonbon's chances in the upcoming Champion Chase. He believes the fast pace of the race will suit his horse, with Edwardstone likely to set the tempo alongside other contenders.

El Fabiolo, trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by Paul Townend, aims to secure a third consecutive Champion Chase win following Energumene's back-to-back victories. Meanwhile, Edwardstone, under Alan King's guidance, seeks to bounce back from previous defeats and put up a strong performance in the race.

Trainer Joe Tizzard is confident in Elixir De Nutz's abilities, despite being considered an outsider, following the horse's Grade One success in the Clarence House. Captain Guinness, trained by Henry de Bromhead, also eyes improvement after a solid performance in last year's renewal.

As the stage is set for an intense showdown at Cheltenham, each contender prepares to showcase their talents and compete for glory in the prestigious Champion Chase.

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