Kelso 'thrilled' to have Long Run

Officials at Kelso are excited at the prospect of Long Run lighting up the fixture at the Borders track on Thursday.

Nicky Henderson's nine-year-old is set to take his chance in the Ivan Straker Memorial Chase, in which he is likely to clash with local hero Knockara Beau.

The five-times course winner, trained in Northumberland by George Charlton, shocked Big Buck's and At Fishers Cross to land the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham on his latest start and is having his prep run ahead of next month's Gold Cup.

Long Run is also in the Gold Cup again and holds an entry in the Crabbie's Grand National.

Clerk of the course Hazel Peplinski reports the track to be in good shape.

"The course is in really good nick and is good to soft, soft in places. The reading suggests it's just on the easy side of good to soft," she said.

"I am very happy with it and the forecast shouldn't change conditions. There is a chance of a little rain tomorrow afternoon, about one or two millimetres.

"I wouldn't think that would change it, so we are sitting pretty. It's a nice card.

"Long Run is all booked in. I understand My Tent Or Yours isn't coming but that should open up the Morebattle Hurdle. The hunter chase looks a good race and the crowd love Knockara Beau. He's a specialist here.

"I believe Long Run may travel up the day before and get here on Wednesday night. It's too far for them to bring him up on the morning of the race.

"It's exciting for us that he's coming here. We're thrilled."