NICKY HENDERSON’S stable star Shishkin shone in a secret Kempton spin.
The former Supreme and Arkle winner is being aimed at a tilt at Boxing Day’s blockbuster 3m King George.Henderson is targeting King George glory with Shishkin[/caption]
He dramatically refused to race when last seen in the Grade 2 Nirvana Spa 1965 Chase at Ascot last month.
But Henderson has entered him in the rearranged Fighting Fifth – a Grade 1 hurdle race over 2m headlined by stablemate Constitution Hill – as a pipe opener for the Kempton cracker.
It turns out, however, that Shishkin has already been at the Surrey track getting ready for the big Christmas race.
Shishkin had a secret workout at Kempton last week.
There was said to have been no repeat of his Ascot shenanigans and he jumped off sweetly under Nico de Boinville.
He then pinged ten fences perfectly without so much as touching a twig leaving Seven Barrows supremo Henderson ‘chuffed’.
Shishkin is a best-price 8-1 for the King George with Gordon Elliott’s Gold Cup-bound Gerri Colombe the 9-4 favourite with some firms.
Paul Nicholls’ defending champ Bravemansgame, beaten twice this season, is as big as 11-4.
Willie Mullins could send over 5-1 Allaho, although it would be a surprise if both Irish raiders make the journey.
Shishkin proved he is a top talent over the staying trip when landing the Grade 1 Aintree Bowl last April.
That came after he finished second to Envoi Allen in the Ryanair at the Festival after being sent off evens fav.
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