Scott issues Melodic warning

Jeremy Scott has warned conditions may not be ideal for Melodic Rendezvous at Cheltenham on Friday.

The six-year-old won a Chepstow bumper on his racecourse introduction in March and justified his trainer's faith in him when finding only Champagne Fever too strong in the Grade One Champion Bumper at the Punchestown Festival.

He ran perfectly well when second to Mr Mole on his hurdling bow at Exeter in October and while Scott feels his star turn is in better shape now, the prospect of testing ground for the British Stallion Studs Pyments Quantity Surveyors EBF "National Hunt" Novices' Hurdle is a concern.

Scott said: "I'm looking forward to running him again. We've been desperate to find some good ground and unfortunately it doesn't look like we're going to get that, but we need to get some more experience into him.

"The ground isn't going to be ideal but there is no prospect of it changing and if we don't get him out we're going to end up in January without much experience.

"It's a good race tomorrow and it will be good education for him.

"I think he's improved a lot since his first run at Exeter so we'll see what happens."

Melodic Rendezvous faces a far from straightforward task with a quality field of eight horses declared for Friday's finale.

Eduard, Imperial Leader and Valdez all won novice hurdles in November, while Village Vic and Mr Watson were both smart in the bumper sphere.

Nicky Henderson introduces point-to-point winner Royal Boy, while likely outsider Dr Dreamy completes the field.