Top 10 in Betfair Chase reckoning at Haydock

Champion jump jockey Richard Johnson could partner Coneygree at Haydock on Saturday
Champion jump jockey Richard Johnson could partner Coneygree at Haydock on Saturday
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Coneygree is one of 10 horses to stand their ground for Saturday’s Betfair Chase at Haydock.

The 2015 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner has only been seen once since his big day at Festival, making a winning return at Sandown last November before injury ruled him out for the rest of the campaign.

Mark Bradstock’s nine-year-old is set to be ridden by Richard Johnson in the absence of regular pilot Nico de Boinville, who was injured in a fall at Cheltenham on Saturday.

The Oxforshire handler said: “The plan is that Richard Johnson will ride him, if he is available.

“He’s ridden him before, and that does help.”

Johnson rode Coneygree at Newbury in February 2015 when the partnership claimed victory in the Denman Chase.

Colin Tizzard can do little wrong this season but his star Cue Card suffered a surprise reverse when only third in last month’s Charlie Hall at Wetherby.

He will attempt to win the race for the second year running after coasting to victory 12 months ago, but he will meet his Wetherby conqueror Irish Cavalier once again, although they will race off level weights this time.

Seeyouatmidnight looked impressive in beating Bristol De Mai at Carlisle last month and represents Scottish handler Sandy Thomson.

Paul Nicholls has reduced his team to just dual winner Silviniaco Conti, but he was no match for Valseur Lido on his return.

God’s Own could step up in trip for Tom George after finishing well in the Old Roan while Menorah could take his chance for Philip Hobbs.

Gordon Elliott has the choice of Outlander or Roi Des Francs while there is also the possibility of Vezelay coming from France.