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Magic Of Light set to defend Newbury title ahead of possible Grand National return

Jessica Harrington-trained Magic Of Light will be bidding for back-to-back victories in the Thoroughbred Breeders Association Mares’ Chase on Wednesday afternoon. The runner finished a creditable second behind two-time winner Tiger Roll in the 2019 renewal of the Randox Health Grand National and this resulted in her official rating leaping to 159 (155 with Timeform), thus leaving her clear of her three fellow Berkshire rivals in this midweek feature.

Harrington is hopeful that the eight-year-old can once again take the prize at Newbury this week prior to building up to the famous steeplechase on April 4th.

The trainer said: “She’s a real flag-bearer for us now and looks well treated on the figures, but she’s got to go and do it.

“She’s in great form at home, we’ve managed to get a run over hurdles into her and it’s all part of the plan.

“Obviously we’re hoping to take her back to Aintree, how we get there I don’t know yet. We might go somewhere at Christmas, there’s Ascot in January, there’s a race at Huntingdon or she could go to Cheltenham.

“She ran a lot of times last year and really thrives for it. She’s versatile, we can go over hurdles or fences and there’s plenty of options for the mares, there’s a great programme for them.”

William Hill Bookmakers have Magic Of Light at an ante-post price of 25/1 with two-time winner Tiger Roll firm favourite to make it a hat-trick of consecutive wins in less than three months’ time.