Jonbon all set for weekend action, with Warwick still preferred over Newbury for now

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The seven-year-old is unbeaten in two starts over fences so far, accounting for Monmiral by seven lengths on his chasing debut at Warwick before coasting to Grade One glory in the Henry VIII Novices' Chase at Sandown in December. Jonbon is the ante-post favourite for next month's Arkle at the Cheltenham Festival, and while Henderson still favours sticking to novice company for his prep he has mentioned Newbury's Game Spirit Chase in dispatches. He said: "I might put him in the Game Spirit at Newbury, but at the moment the plan remains to go to Warwick. That has been the plan all along. Everything has been great since Sandown and he is in super form. "He schooled on Thursday and he has been great. Aidan (Coleman) will come and give him another pop over fences this week, but he is having a good time. "He just wants one more run before Cheltenham and this fits perfectly. He was silky smooth at Sandown the last day. He jumped, he galloped and he showed he has gears." The Willie Mullins-trained El Fabiolo staked his own Arkle claims with victory in the Irish version at Leopardstown on Saturday and given there was only a neck between the pair when they clashed in last season's Top Novices' Hurdle at Aintree, Henderson is anticipating another titanic tussle next month. Henderson said: "That was a good race in Ireland (Irish Arkle) and El Fabiolo was only a neck behind Jonbon at Aintree last season. "That is good form in Ireland and the danger to Jonbon in the Arkle was always going to come out of that race and it certainly has. El Fabiolo has beaten three good horses there in Banbridge, Appreciate It, and Dysart Dynamo. "We just want Jonbon to have a nice time at Warwick to put himself right for Cheltenham. "There is a little bit of room for this race to come and put him where we want him for Cheltenham."

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