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Published: 16:20 | 19/9/16

Coneygree could make return at Haydock

Coneygree could make his return in the Betfair Chase at Haydock.

The nine-year-old sustained a hock injury as he was being prepared for a run at Christmas and was subsequently ruled out for the remainder of the campaign.

Connections are delighted with his condition ahead of his return and are considering sending him to Haydock and a possible crack at the Jockey Club Chase Triple Crown - the Betfair Chase, 32Red King George VI Chase and the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup.

"He is in very good form. He did his first piece of proper fast work on Saturday and he feels amazing really," Sara Bradstock, wife and assistant to trainer Mark, said.

"I actually think he's probably in better form than he was this time last year. The injury he had was one of those niggly things that got progressively worse and, in hindsight, I think it's something he probably picked up when he won the Gold Cup.

"He obviously came out and won at Sandown, but looking back, I don't think he jumped as well as can that day, so he was probably feeling something. He obviously wasn't lame or we wouldn't have run.

"The weather is going to play a big part in where we start off as I don't think we'd even think about running him on good ground, it would need to be on the slow side of good.

"We are tempted by the bonus, so it could be that we wait until the Betfair Chase at Haydock.

"If the ground came we might think about the Charlie Hall. We'll probably enter him at Wetherby and see how it looks, but the worry would be it comes close enough to Haydock."

Coneygree became the first novice in 41 years to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup when he landed the blue riband in 2015.

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