Call Me Lord to put Champion credentials on line

Call Me Lord, likely to start a warm favourite for Saturday’s Grade 2 Betway Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton, has pleased connections since his impressive victory under top weight in a Sandown handicap last month and is ready to take the next step in his career.

Nicky Henderson's five-year-old was mentioned as a potential Unibet Champion Hurdle contender following that heavy ground success under 11st 12lb off a mark of 143, and he will be given the opportunity to test his credentials for that race this weekend.

Anthony Bromley, racing manager to Call Me Lord's owners Simon Munir and Isaac Souede, said on Tuesday: “Wincanton has been the plan since he last ran. Nicky is happy with him and we’ll make a decision about the Champion Hurdle afterwards. He also has the County Hurdle option.”

Bromley, who also reported that Bristol De Mai is likely to sidestep Cheltenham and make his next appearance in Aintree’s Grade 1 Betway Bowl, added: “The Kingwell looks like being a proper test for Call Me Lord, with the likes of Elgin and Ch’Tibello in there.

“Having said that, I don’t think Buveur D’Air will be quaking in his boots just yet!”

Call Me Lord generally hardened in the Kingwell market on Wednesday, and is quoted at 6-5 by the sponsor.

The Nick Williams-trained Flying Tiger, a 12-1 shot with most bookmakers for Saturday's Grade 2, was reported “in good form” by Lizzie Kelly, with the Randox Health County Hurdle nominated as his Cheltenham target.