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Tizzard mulling options for The Showcase

Trainer Colin Tizzard landed the Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup with Native River at The Festival™ presented by Magners in March and should saddle a number of runners at the opening meeting of Cheltenham's new season, The Showcase, on Friday, October 26 and Saturday, October 27.

The Milborne Port handler's team could be headed by Lostintranslation, who finished seventh in the G1 Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle at The Festival™ presented by Magners in March, before chasing home Black Op in the G1 Mersey Novices' Hurdle at Aintree's Randox Health Grand National Festival in April.

Tizzard, relishing a novice chase campaign with the six-year-old, is considering the £25,000 squareintheair.com Novices' Chase (2.35pm) over two miles on day one of The Showcase.

Tizzard revealed: "Lostintranslation was a nice novice hurdler and we are looking forward to going novice chasing with him.

"We would some like good winter ground with him, so we will see how the weather is over the next few days.

"He had some very good form last season and was only narrowly beaten at Aintree.

"He is in good form and is a beautiful horse. We will start over two or two and a half miles and I think he will stay further than that in time."

Another potential starter for Tizzard in the squareintheair.com Novices' Chase is Storm Home. The six-year-old won two of his seven starts last term, capturing novices' hurdles at Taunton and Wincanton. The son of King's Theatre was fifth on his debut over fences at Uttoxeter in May.

Tizzard continued: "Storm Home is a nice horse who won two races for us last season and is quite promising.

"Novice chasing is the plan and he could start at Cheltenham on either Friday or Saturday.

"He did well over hurdles and hopefully will do even better over fences."

Storm Home and Lostintranslation are both also entered in the £25,000 'Move Over To Matchbook' Novices' Chase (4.20pm) over two miles and a half miles on day two of The Showcase.

 Elixir De Nutz initially was trained by Philip Hobbs in Britain after scoring in a bumper at Argentan, France in October, 2017 for trainer Guy Cherel.

The four-year-old was well-beaten behind the Nicky Henderson-trained Apple's Shakira in the G2JCB Triumph Trial Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham on Festival Trials Day, January 27, before falling at the final flight when holding every chance in a maiden hurdle at Uttoxeter in May.

The Terry Warner-owned grey gelding has since joined Tizzard and is entered in the £15,000 Foundation Developments Ltd Maiden Hurdle (4.55pm) on day one of The Showcase.

Tizzard said: "Elixir De Nutz joined the yard from Philip Hobbs and might have won at Uttoxeter in May if he hadn't fallen at the last. I like him."

 Going

 The going at Cheltenham is currently Good.

Conditions are forecast to be sunny and dry with temperatures of up to 16 degrees Celsius by midweek. Cooler temperatures with occasional showers are forecast for Friday and Saturday.

With no rain forecast until the showers at the end of the week, the course will be selectively irrigated to maintain current conditions.

The Showcase offers record prize money of £370,400 across the two days in 2018 - a boost of £51,400 (16 per cent) on the £319,000 in 2017. The increase is part of the £8-million cash injection announced by The Jockey Club in December of last year.

The biggest prize money boosts at The Showcase apply to the two handicap chases run on Saturday.

The 'Matchbook Betting Exchange' Handicap Chase (2.00pm) over three miles and a furlong and the two-mile Randox Health Handicap Chase (3.10pm) both have a total prize fund of £60,000 (up from £50,000 in 2017).

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