Today's racecards

Junior team examine options for the chaser's seasonal reappearance

Last Updated: 28/11/12 10:56am

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Junior in action last season

Junior in action last season

Sky Bet

Connections of Junior have yet to decide whether the high-class chaser will make his seasonal reappearance at Newbury or Newcastle this weekend.

The David Pipe-trained nine-year-old has been a fine servant to his owners Middleham Park Racing, winning at Royal Ascot and the Cheltenham Festival in the last couple of years.

He was an early casualty when a leading fancy for the Grand National at Aintree in April and pulled up on his only subsequent start in the Scottish equivalent, but he is set for an imminent return.

He could either carry top-weight in the At The Races Rehearsal Chase at Newcastle, or take his chance in the far more competitive Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury.

Middleham Park racing manager Nick Bradley said: "I think we're going to wait until Thursday morning and then make a decision about which way we're going.

"Obviously it's difficult to say what ground conditions are going to be like at this stage.

"Newcastle is the easier opportunity and it would be nice to start him off in an easier race to get his confidence up, but then he would have a lot of weight in very testing ground.

"We don't really know what the ground is going to be like at Newbury yet, it might be the same situation there, so we'll just have to see.

"David tells me he's in good heart and he's had a wind operation since his run in the Scottish National."

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