Brilliant Teeton Mill has the stamina to make it a grey day.
The nine-year-old grey is in the best form of his life this season and gave notice that he is ready to take on the best when running away with the Hennessy Cognac Gold Cup last month.
He may have only carried 10st 5lb when thrashing Eudipe by 15 lengths but he would have won easily with at least another 14lb on his back.
As the sadly-missed One Man only carried 10st when taking the Hennessy in 1994 it shows that the winner of Newbury's valuable handicap chase can go on and compete at the highest level on equal terms.
Greys have made the race - the mid-season three-mile championship on Boxing Day - their own in the last 10 years thanks to six wins through the great Desert Orchid (four) and One Man (two).
Now last season's leading hunter-chaser can take over the mantle and cap a tremendous year for his trainer Venetia Williams with victory in this pounds 100,000-added contest.
Miss Williams has also proved herself a proficient dual-purpose trainer by saddling Stretarez to victory in the Ormonde Stakes at Chester in May.
Last year's winner See More Business bids to become the eighth horse in the last 25 years to complete the double.
He showed that he is in good heart by giving 21lb and a length and a quarter beating to Dom Samourai for his second successive win in the Rehearsal Chase at Chepstow.
Irish raider Imperial Call, the 1996 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner, returned to his best with a victory over Dorans Pride at Punchestown earlier this month.
Despite the presence of a previous King George and Gold Cup hero, Teeton Mill is worthy of the nap vote.
Tiutchev also looks a good bet in the Pertemps City Network Handicap Hurdle judged on his effortless success over Sir Talbot at Cheltenham two weeks ago.
He can provide trainer David Nicholson with the second leg of a double - the first being Spendid in the Network Design International Feltham Novices' Chase.
This highly-promising recruit is unbeaten in three races over fences at Wetherby and Cheltenham (twice). He is shaping up into a serious candidate for the Royal & Sun Alliance Chase at the Festival in March.
The feature pounds 20,000 Rowland Meyrick Handicap Chase over three miles and one furlong at Wetherby can go to the progressive Random Harvest.
The nine-year-old Strong Gale gelding warmed up for this event with a 30-length thrashing of Eirespray over this course and distance earlier this month.
Mrs Reveley can also strike in the Christmas Novices' Hurdle with the exciting Lord Lamb. The six-year-old grey is on a hat-trick after two impressive wins at Newcastle. There are 10 meetings scheduled for Boxing Day - weather permitting - so there must be a feast of good things.
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|Publication:||The Birmingham Post (England)|
|Date:||Dec 24, 1998|
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