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Published: 12:40 | 12/10/16

Coneygree on course for comeback

Coneygree remains on target to make his seasonal bow in next month's Betfair Chase but plans to give him a racecourse gallop have been put on hold.

Winner of the 2015 Cheltenham Gold Cup, Coneygree was unable to defend his crown as a result of the hock injury he sustained late last year.

His recovery has gone to plan and connections are hoping to run him in either the Bet365 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby on October 29 or the Betfair Chase at Haydock three weeks later.

He had been due to have a racecourse gallop at Haydock this weekend but he will not travel to the Merseyside venue due to fast ground.

"Although slightly frustrated by the lack of rain, Coneygree has been galloping and schooling on our new Andrews Bowen Soundtrack all-weather gallop, and we are delighted with his progress," Sara Bradstock, wife and assistant to trainer Mark Bradstock wrote on his website.

"Both Nico (de Boinville) and I agree that he feels every bit as good, if not a little bit better than ever and the excitement of getting back on the track is mounting in the yard!

"We were hoping to be going for a racecourse gallop at Haydock this weekend but for the first time in many years, the ground is fast and not suitable for our champ.

"Kirkland Tellwright, the clerk of the course at Haydock, has been extremely helpful and is willing to reorganise when the weather changes."

While the Bet365 Charlie Hall Chase remains an option, the nine-year-old looks set to make his return at Haydock on November 19.

"The Bet365 Charlie Hall at Wetherby has been considered as a comeback race option but with only three weeks between that race and the Betfair at Haydock, it is perhaps not ideal when he has been off the track for so long," she revealed.

"However, he copes with his racing well, so it would be a possibility if the ground is right and we have not managed to get a satisfactory racecourse gallop into him in the meantime."

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