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Having won all but one of his 16 races over fences, it might seem a little harsh to suggest that Altior has something to prove when he finally returns to action at Kempton Park this afternoon, 10 months on from a win in the Game Spirit Chase at Newbury which appeared, at the time, to set up a memorable clash with Chacun Pour Soi in the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham.
Neither horse made it to the starting line in the end, of course, while Altior’s sudden departure from the field three days before the race was the fifth time in the 2019-20 season alone that he had missed a contest that had previously been inked – or at least, heavily pencilled – into his schedule.