Last season's Champion Hurdle hero Rock On Ruby is among field of six possibles for the StanJames.com Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle on Saturday following the confirmation stage.
The seven-year-old will bid to give rookie trainer Harry Fry a major success in his first season with a licence. Fry was assistant to the horse's former handler Paul Nicholls and was responsible for Rock On Ruby when the horse took the Cheltenham crown.
Another Festival victor set for Newcastle is Countrywide Flame, winner of the Triumph Hurdle for North Yorkshire trainer John Quinn.
Trainer Donald McCain and jockey Jason Maguire have taken this prestigious prize for the last two years with Peddlers Cross and Overturn. They are relying upon Cinders And Ashes giving them a notable hat-trick.
The five-year-old was last seen winning the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at the Festival from Nicky Henderson's Darlan and the Charles Byrnes-trained Trifolium. They, too, have been left in the Fighting Fifth.
Completing the sextet is Bothy, who has been supplemented by Brian Ellison following his fine effort to take fourth place behind Olofi in the Racing Post Hurdle at Cheltenham earlier this month.
The trainer said: "He's just a brilliant horse. I could have run him again a couple of days later, he's come out of it in great form. I just love the horse to bits."
Henderson admits the wet weather that is battering the country is giving him real cause for concern. The situation at Newcastle appears particularly bad and the trainer admits Darlan may not make the journey to the North East if the meeting does go ahead.
Henderson also raised the possibility of the Fighting Fifth being switched to a different racecourse, as it was when his Punjabi won the race at Wetherby in 2008 and when Peddlers Cross was victorious at Newbury in 2010.
Henderson said: "It's getting on the verge of depressing, let alone worrying. Newcastle is under threat for the Fighting Fifth. It sounds pretty dangerous. They have re-routed the Fighting Fifth in the past. If Newcastle was on you'd have to wonder if we'd want to be going there anyway, but if they switched it to Newbury is that going to be heavy as well?"
21 September 2014X-Factor makes it Peckham first
Brooch adorns Smullen century
Cooper edging closer to return
River 'possible' for Royal Lodge
Together takes Gowran spoils
Nash eyeing Aintree bid for Busy
Ajjaadd team seek autumn aim
Fitz fine following comeback run
Dark team to mull options
Glory in Abbaye frame
Ascot on Silk radar
Chrome beaten in Parx return
Fab Fitz back in business
Ayr raid heaven sent for Doyle
Improving Angel lifts Trophy
Hunter hits the target at Ayr
Pilot flies to Newbury glory
Close gets Silver call
Toocool too good in Mill Reef
Dark lights up in Clyde
Hill stars at Newbury
20 September 2014King Louis strikes Ayr gold
Yeenaan takes control
Wannabe Yours heads Joel list
Providence supplemented for Rockfel
That could tackle fences this year
Bell saddened by Wigmore article
Limato out of Mill Reef
Horse welfare 'priority' - BHA
Four-timer for magical McCoy
Accipiter comes good for Wall
Hawk leads treble swoop for Hughes
Bamford wants a Gold Watch
Ainippe samples joy of six at Ayr
Goldie pair on Gold run
Angel of the north heads to Newbury
Candy issues Limato Reef advisory
Glorious bids to protect Legacy
19 September 2014Perfect return for Maguire
Rebel has a cause at Listowel
Ryan quartet in Ayr raid
Varian swoops for Marshall
Simcock aims high with star duo
Bolster back on Gold trail
Fahey chasing Newmarket Millions
Time called on Dude career
Makin off to a flyer at Ayr
Festival stalwart Celestial retired
Guest banking on Memory at Ayr
Dettori sweet on World rule
Baraweez on track for Ascot
Maguire raring to go
Watchable handed low Gold draw
Palmer mulls Aktabantay options
Bronze seeking Newmarket gold
18 September 2014Breathing operation for Cue Card
Early conclusion to Levy agreement
Johnson Houghton hearing date set
Walker looks to future with Moon
Red-hot Kirby in Sandown treble
Listed honours for Hadaatha
Busy bags another National
Botti lines up Newmarket raid
Vintage performance from Weld filly
Cup dreams in mind for Forever
Weld prepares Newmarket challenge
McGrath and Walton charged by BHA
Encke camp ponder next move