Nicky Henderson feels Might Bite has now ‘grown up’ enough to take aim at the jumps racing Triple Crown and the £1m bonus payout that goes with it.
The champion trainer did not enter Might Bite in last year’s Betfair Chase at Haydock, the first leg of the Triple Crown, instead taking an easier option at Sandown before sending him to Kempton where he won the King George VI Chase on Boxing Day.
Might Bite would then finish a gallant second to Native River in the Gold Cup, the Triple Crown finale, at Cheltenham in March.
Questions over his temperament have lingered in the past but Henderson now feels Might Bite has matured and the nine-year-old is headed for Haydock’s mid-winter Grade One in November where he’ll seek to initiate his Triple Crown claims.
“We gave him an easier start in that intermediate race at Sandown, rather than thinking about Haydock or anything like that, as the King George was the project and it’s still very much the first major project again,” said the Seven Barrows trainer.
“Now this time we have to go down the £1m bonus road, so we’ll aim to go for the Betfair Chase first and if you win that then you’re immediately the only man standing, so it’s obvious you’ve got to try and he’s grown up enough now.
“He was pretty grown up all last season and I thought he was great in the Gold Cup. I wouldn’t say that the ground beat him but a better horse on the ground beat him.”
Might Bite is favourite at 3.50 to win a second King George VI Chase at Kempton Park on December 26.