Thousand Stars, Voler La Vedette and Oscar Whisky are among 12 Ladbrokes World Hurdle rivals for Big Buck’s.
Paul Nicholls’ star hurdler will be going for a record fourth consecutive World Hurdle on Thursday, is odds-on to make history, and will be joined in the field by stablemates Five Dream and King Of The Night.
However this looks the strongest renewal for several years, and includes a stern Irish challenge which not only includes star mare Voler La Vedette, but a Willie Mullins quartet led by Thousand Stars.
Also in for Mullins are So Young, Mikael d’Haguenet and last-year’s third home Mourad.
David Pipe saddled Grands Crus to finish second 12 months ago and will rely on fellow grey Dynaste this time around, whilst Alan King runs his progressive grey Smad Place.
Gordon Elliott’s Carlito Brigante and Jennie Candlish’s Cross Kennon complete the 13-strong field.