Martin Keighley aiming for Jewson Novices’ with Champion Court

Martin Keighley will give his main Cheltenham Festival contender Champion Court a final workout this weekend ahead of the Jewson Novices’ Chase.

Although the seven-year-old has four entries at the meeting, local trainer Keighley favours keeping him in his experienced division for the two-and-a-half-mile showpiece on March 15.

Six of Champion Court’s 10 starts have been at Cheltenham, where he has won twice and placed several times at a very high level.

“I’m going to take him to Newbury for a racecourse gallop on Sunday and I think he’s got a live chance in the Jewson,” said Condicote-based Keighley.

“His form is rock-solid. He chased home Grands Crus, giving him 5lb, which was almost impossible at Cheltenham, then he won a Grade Two on New Year’s Day beating a good horse of Nicky Henderson’s called Solix, as well as Invictus, who went on to win at Ascot.

“He’s our big hope.”