Zarkandar attempts to boost his strong claims for the Stan James Champion Hurdle when he lines up at Wincanton.
The second favourite for next month's Festival showpiece has this term won the Elite Hurdle on this track and the International Hurdle at Cheltenham. He has his final race before the big one when facing five rivals in the Grade Two Bathwick Tyres Kingwell Hurdle.
Trainer Paul Nicholls said: "This is his final preparation race before the Champion Hurdle. We'd prefer better ground, but he's won on similar going so we are not worried. He goes well fresh. We've trained him differently this year and it seems to suit him."
Nicholls also runs Celestial Halo, who has finished second in this race for the last two years, while Alan King has won this race twice in recent times and goes for a third victory with Raya Star and Balder Succes.
"This has been a lucky race for us, with both Katchit and Mille Chief successful," the Barbury Castle handler told www.alankingracing.co.uk.
"Raya Star has been a model of consistency and has never stopped improving. He gave us two great days when winning The Ladbroke and the Scottish Champion Hurdle and also landed a hot Listed handicap at Ascot in November.
"His second to Darlan at Kempton makes excellent reading, and he is fresh and well after a short break, while the small field will certainly suit Balder Succes, who travelled well in the Welsh Champion but ultimately did not get home.
"He will appreciate coming back in trip and won't mind the ground, and, while he is wrong at the weights, he gets claustrophobic, so these conditions races seem to suit him better than the big handicaps."
Nicky Henderson saddled Binocular to lift this prize 12 months ago and has chosen this race to bring back Khyber Kim. The 2010 Champion Hurdle runner-up, when under the care of Nigel Twiston-Davies, returns to action after being sidelined for 681 days.
The Seven Barrows handler said: "He's in remarkably good form. He used to be a very good worker when I had him and Nigel said the same. He's capable of showing really good form, but he has been off for centuries and I'm sure he'll need the run."
1 October 2016The Juliet Rose blossoms to beat Almela in Prix de Royallieu
Doha Dream lifts opening honours in Prix Chaudenay at Chantilly
Christophe Lemaire dreams of Arc glory aboard Japanese raider Makahiki
Jet Setting ready to swoop in Concorde at Tipperary
Jim Crowley rides his 46th winner in September at Newcastle
Ivan Grozny and Hargam star in Istabraq Hurdle at Tipperary
Noel Meade hopeful as Road To Riches takes Gowran challenge
Alyssa digs deep to see off Fireglow at Ascot
Fontwell contest stopped and voided after mid-race drama
Abbaye draw means 'plenty of options' for Mecca's Angel
Grounds for optimism in Sun Chariot for Aidan O'Brien and Alice Springs
'Peak' Postponed primed for Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe
Chepstow looking unlikely for Thistlecrack chasing debut
Shalaa all set for eagerly-awaited Ascot return
Dean Ivory hoping Librisa Breeze can rise to Ascot Challenge
Arab looking to spring into action in Cumberland Lodge outing
30 September 2016Airlie Beach makes all to continue on upgrade at Gowran Park
QEII-bound Awtaad to retire at end of the season
Barry Geraghty opts to wait another week on riding comeback
Hathal booked for QEII bid after swerving French mission
Mehmas 'highly unlikely' to feature in Dewhurst as retirement beckons
Pat Smullen anticipating bold show from Almela in Chantilly contest
Mecca's Angel faces 16 rivals as she shoots for Abbaye glory
Burke eager to team up with Tizzard following Potts switch
Postponed draws stall seven for Sunday's Arc showdown at Chantilly
Roger Charlton in quest for Cadran success with More
Frankie Dettori delight at Order Of St George ride in Arc for Aidan O'Brien
Jim Crowley continues title march at Brighton
Davy Russell hit by hefty ban at Clonmel
Argenterie scoped badly after Rockfel disappointment
Persuasive options open as connections opt to miss Sun Chariot
Airlie Beach bids to continue unbeaten run at Gowran Park
Quest For More leads British Cadran challenge
Elliott pleased to welcome new Gigginstown recruits following Mullins split
Don Cossack set to return to Gordon Elliott as he continues recovery
29 September 2016Review leads to major shake-up in BHA disciplinary procedures
G Force swerves Ascot weekend run to wait for Curragh
Postponed heads 16 runners remaining in Arc reckoning
Alice Springs leads nine in Sun Chariot test
Marco Botti mapping out Easter Classic defence for Grendisar
David Menuisier planning double assault on Old Rowley Cup
Jack Hobbs enjoys racecourse gallop at Kempton
Willie Mullins and Gigginstown House in split, Gordon Elliott to train Don Poli
Air Force Blue retired to stud in America
Lightning Spear in 'top form' for QEII challenge
Hughie Morrison lines up three-pronged attack on Cesarewitch
Five Gigginstown stars Willie Mullins will miss
Mecca's Angel heads British possibles for Abbaye test
Almanzor taken out of Arc reckoning
28 September 2016Make Time makes case for Racing Post Trophy tilt
Ebor hero Heartbreak City set for Melbourne Cup bid
Five high-profile splits in the racing world
Gigginstown House Stud horses leave Willie Mullins in split over training fees
Willie Mullins announces Gigginstown House Stud split
JP McManus pair in the frame for Tipperary test
'I lost over £1million - and just in one race. I was winning going to the last'
'All systems go' for Harzand as Arc raid takes shape for Dermot Weld
Nicky Henderson takes the long road to Tipperary with Hargam
Charlie Fellowes pulls off Fairyhouse coup with big gamble Moonlit Show
Fair Eva conqueror Spain Burg to go under the hammer
Adrian Keatley checks in for Concorde Stakes with Jet Setting
Jim Bolger to resist Dollar cash with Dundalk-bound Qatari Hunter
Minor setback forces Magical Memory into early winter break
Ascot still top of Almanzor agenda despite featuring in Arc field
Trip To Paris in contention for Cadran outing at Chantilly