Hughes in the hunt for Naas prize

Dessie Hughes believes Schindlers Hunt is showing all the signs of being back to his best ahead of the paddypower.com Newlands Chase at Naas on Sunday.

Dessie Hughes believes Schindlers Hunt is showing all the signs of being back to his best ahead of the paddypower.com Newlands Chase at Naas on Sunday.

The eight-year-old was a smart novice chaser last term but has not visited the winner’s enclosure for 13 months and was only fourth of six to Tamarinbleu in the Victor Chandler Chase at Ascot on his latest start.

However, he is pleasing his trainer and a big run is expected in the Grade Two contest over two miles.

“It’s a nice race and we expect him to go close. We’ll see if he’s back to what he was last year. We think he’s back now,” said Hughes.

How Schindlers Hunt performs on Sunday will determine which race he will go for at Cheltenham as he holds entries in the Seasons Holidays Queen Mother Champion Chase, the Ryanair Chase and the Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase.

“We might run him in the Grand Annual or something. We’ll see how he goes on Sunday first. He’s in three races – you have to keep your options open,” Hughes added.

Foreman, Benefit Night, Don’t Be Bitin, Maralan, Tumbling Dice and Vintage Treasure make up the seven-strong Newlands field.

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