Altior will face a maximum of just three rivals in Saturday's Matchbook

Last Updated: 14/01/19 1:59pm

Altior - only three rivals at Ascot

Altior – only three rivals at Ascot

Altior will face a maximum of just three rivals in Saturday’s Matchbook Clarence House Chase at Ascot.

The current star of the National Hunt scene dominates the potential line-up as he looks to extended his winning run over obstacles to 17.

Nicky Henderson’s nine-year-old has looked imperious this season, winning the Tingle Creek Chase from Un De Sceaux before having little more than a canter round to win the Desert Orchid Chase.

Un De Sceaux is one of his potential opponents again and he would be trying to win the race for a fourth time.

Willie Mullins’ charge turned 11 on New Year’s Day, but proved he is far from a back number when pushing Altior all the way at Sandown.

However, it is no secret he is a mud lover and with the ground already good, good to soft in places and little rain forecast, his participation is far from certain.

Colin Tizzard’s Fox Norton is due to return from the injury that has kept him off the track since the 2017 King George VI Chase.

Prior to that, he had shown his class in winning the Melling Chase at Aintree and Punchestown’s Champion Chase.

The fourth possible runner is Paul Nicholls’ Diego Du Charmil, who chased home Altior at Kempton over Christmas, albeit beaten 19 lengths.

Those taken out included Waiting Patiently, Saint Calvados, God’s Own and Politologue.