Racing Post's Christmas Racing Preview

There is surely no better way to blow away the excesses of Christmas Day than a trip to the races on December 26th.

Boxing Day is all about the 32Red King George VI Chase at Kempton and it promises to be the race of the season so far with some of the finest chasers in the land assembling for a pulsating contest.

The mercurial Might Bite is set to go off favourite but he faces stern opposition from the likes of Bristol De Mai, Thistlecrack and Fox Norton.

The 32Red King George is undoubtedly the main course but there promises to be tasty starter with Champion Hurdle winner Buveur D'Air strutting his stuff in the Christmas Hurdle.

Kempton stages another meeting the following day, headlined by the Desert Orchid Chase, as it shares the limelight with Chepstow, which hosts the Coral Welsh Grand National.

One of the great spectacles of the season, the 3m5½f contest will not be for the faint-hearted. The mud will be flying and stamina will be crucial for a race always throws up a compelling story. 

The centrepiece of Leopardstown's four-day Christmas meeting starting on December 26th - or St Stephen's Day as it's known across the Irish Sea - arrives on December 28th with the Leopardstown Christmas Steeplechase, a race formerly known as the Lexus.

Sizing John, a supercar of a racehorse, is set to take his next step towards a defence of his Cheltenham Gold Cup crown after connections opted to stay at home for Christmas rather than travel across for the 32Red King George.  

Save some room as the feast of action over the festive period does not end there. Two days later Newbury stages a card featuring the Grade 1 Betfred Challow Novices' Hurdle before Cheltenham brings in the new year on January 1st with a meeting offering up an abundance of Festival clues.

What a time of year to be a racing fan.

by The Racing Post's Andrew Dietz at Rewards4Racing

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