Joncol gearing up for Lexus bid

Stable star expected to improve on his seasonal return

Last Updated: 29/11/10 7:43pm

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Joncol: Lexus assignment

Joncol: Lexus assignment

Sky Bet

Trainer Paul Nolan is hoping Joncol will be back to his best in the Lexus Chase at Leopardstown over the Christmas period.

The giant gelding was well-beaten on his return at Navan but the strong-staying seven-year-old is capable of much better, reports his trainer.

"We were a bit disappointed (at Navan) though it (the trip) was a bit short for him and he wasn't himself," Nolan told At The Races.

"He seems 100% now. Unfortunately the John Durkan comes too soon so we are looking at the Lexus now.

"There's the Hennessy at Leopardstown after that which he won last year. They are the two main aims for the season. We'll see what happens after the Hennessy.

"Whether he would handle Cheltenham I'm not sure.

"With his action he will handle better ground, but whether he will handle the undulations of Cheltenham is another thing."

What A Friend, trained by Paul Nicholls, is among the 30 entries, as is the runner-up Money Trix, from the Nicky Richards stable.

Among others featuring in a strong list of entries are Hennessy Gold Cup first and third, Diamond Harry and Denman, Neptune Collonges, Taranis, Sizing Europe plus three from three Willie Mullins yard - Cooldine, J'y Vole and Kempes.

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