Constitution Hill comes through gallop in style

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Constitution Hill, the most exciting jumper in training, looked in top order on Friday morning when the finishing touches were applied to his preparations for next week’s BetMGM Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle.

Trained in Lambourn by Nicky Henderson, Constitution Hill has been flawless in his seven starts and his four Grade 1 triumphs last season included the Champion Hurdle, when he barely came off the bridle to beat prolific Irish raider State Man.

He is set to make his seasonal reappearance at Newcastle on Saturday week in a race he also landed easily last year.

Owned by Henderson’s great friend Michael Buckley, the superstar six-year-old schooled on Thursday morning and then exercised 24 hours later under regular big-race rider Nico de Boinville on the six-time champion trainer’s Faringdon Road grass gallop.

As part of first lot just after 7.30am, Constitution Hill worked with two stablemates for eight and a half furlongs and was well on top at the finish, pulling clear in powerful and effortless fashion.

The son of Blue Bresil was then walked back into Henderson’s historic Seven Barrows base by his jockey, who washed him down before taking him back to his stable.

De Boinville was content with how things went, as was Henderson, whose string all appeared in fine nick on a chilly, grey, but dry Berkshire morning.

Henderson said: “He schooled yesterday and worked today and we’re all very happy with him.”

A 1-6 chance for the Fighting Fifth, Constitution Hill is a general 1-2 shot for the Champion Hurdle, which is sponsored by Unibet.

After Newcastle, his route to the Cheltenham Festival in March could include Kempton’s Ladbrokes Christmas Hurdle on December 26 before a return to the home of jump racing for the Unibet Hurdle a month later.