Bobs Worth aims to emulate Denman by graduating to full company with victory in Saturday's Hennessy Cognac Gold Cup at Newbury.
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The Nicky Henderson-trained Bobs Worth won the RSA Chase in March and is pitched into this ultra-competitive Grade Three handicap on his first start back.
Paul Nicholls followed that plan with Denman in 2007 and he duly completed the big-race double.
Punters will be hoping the ante-post favourite can repeat the trick, despite being saddled with 11st 6b.
"It was always where we were going to start," said Henderson.
"He stays and I think he handles soft ground.
"I'm not worried about his handicap mark as he's not going to go up sitting in his box - I don't think he's particularly well handicapped anyway.
"We do have a preference to go left-handed, so Newbury was the obvious way to go."
Henderson has a second string to his bow in ex-Irish runner Roberto Goldback.
The 10-year-old was initially due to run at Newbury on Friday but the Seven Barrows handler had a late change of heart in midweek and will now let the recent nine-length Ascot winner take his chance.
"The handicapper took a view that he had improved 13lb when he won at Ascot, and that's very nice of him, but we just don't think that is the case," he said.
"That 13lb makes it hard for him, but he stays, he jumps and he gallops."
Tidal Bay carries top weight for Nicholls in the three-and-a-quarter-mile heat after returning to winning form with victory in the bet365 Gold Cup last April.
That was his first win in over two years and he has since added a Grade Two hurdle victory at Wetherby on his seasonal return.
Nicholls said: "It took us a while to get him right last year but he won the bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown very well off top weight and then he won over hurdles recently at Wetherby.
"I hope the ground is testing and I think he's got a great chance.
"It's not going to be easy, but he carried 11st 12lb in the bet365 race. He's a very classy horse and that counts.
"The weight doesn't worry me. We've worked out how to train him and we've got him right.
"What he wants is testing ground so they go slow and he can just be passing horses quietly as he picks the bridle up.
"I saw him work the other day and I think it's the best I've seen him look, so I'm hopeful we've just turned things around and he's got a chance."
First Lieutenant chased home Bobs Worth at Cheltenham and was eventually beaten two and a half lengths.
He went on to finish third at the Punchestown Festival and has already had two runs this term,
most recently finishing second to Kauto Stone in Grade One company at Down Royal.
Trainer Mouse Morris said: "Bobs Worth is obviously a much shorter price than us.
"Maybe they (bookmakers) are right, but it won't bother me - the horse doesn't know what price he is.
"Ideally we'd like better ground, but then so would he (Bobs Worth), so what's good for the goose is good for the gander.
"I'm very hopeful our horse is going to run a big race.
"He's ready to rock and roll and hopefully the ground is drying out a bit and it isn't going to be too bad.
"There is nowhere else for him to go before the Lexus, so he might as well run as he's in really good fettle at the moment."
Hold On Julio caught the attention of many pundits when a fine third at Cheltenham on his seasonal return.
He disappointed when sent off joint-favourite in Grade Three company at the Cheltenham Festival but trainer Alan King is sweet on his chances this time.
The Barbury Castle handler told his website, www.alankingracing.co.uk: "Hold On Julio represents us on Saturday and is unquestionably the best chance we've had of winning the prestigious handicap.
"He continues to improve, even as he approaches his 10th birthday, and I couldn't be happier with his well-being.
"I was thrilled with his seasonal reappearance at Cheltenham last month and he has come on significantly for that run.
"He's got a nice weight, should handle the ground and gets the trip well.
"In short, he ticks all the boxes and I'm hopeful of a big run."
David Pipe won this race with Madison Du Berlais in 2008 and The Package represents the Pond House Handler this time.
He won a Listed race at Wincanton on his seasonal bow and Pipe believes a repeat of that effort should be enough to be competitive.
"He's ready to go," he said.
"He's not the easiest horse in the world to keep right and he won't appreciate the ground, but they all have to go on it and he is a nine-year-old, so hopefully he can handle it.
"It's an open Hennessy - I'm not sure it's a vintage one - but it will take some winning.
"Bobs Worth is probably the one to beat, he could end up being a Gold Cup horse and be well handicapped.
"But he's in good form and three-miles-two round Newbury should be ideal for him.
"He was good at Wincanton and if he runs to a similar level on Saturday I'll be happy with that."
Amateur Sam Waley-Cohen has been working hard to get his weight down to the 10st 1lb his mount Frisco Depot is set to carry.
Owned by the rider's father, Robert, and trained by Charlie Longsdon, Frisco Depot was a faller in the Ascot race won by Roberto Goldback.
That was his first run for Longsdon after transferring from the care of Dessie Hughes.
"He's a lovely horse," said Longsdon.
"I couldn't believe he would be keen last time and he was keen for two miles.
"I hope he's learned from his fall - he's schooled well at home."
Diamond Harry has had his fair share of problems since winning this race two years ago.
Pulled up in his last three starts, connections of the Nick Williams-trained nine-year-old are hoping a return to the scene of his greatest triumph will spark a revival in fortunes.
"He's certainly working well and he's fit to run, but with three pulled-ups obviously we are not quite sure what's going to happen," said owner Paul Duffy.
"He's well in himself and ready to run.
"It didn't suit him going the other way at Wincanton. As a trial, it wasn't a particularly good one.
"He didn't take too much out of himself there so let's hope it's brought him on a bit and he's in the right frame of mind.
"Nick Scholfield knows the horse well now at home so we thought it right to put him up and give him a go."
Teaforthree won the four-mile National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham and was not totally disgraced on his return when down the field at Prestbury Park earlier this month.
"He has a nice weight (10st 6lb) and he loves heavy ground, so I think we'd be a bit silly not to run him," said trainer Rebecca Curtis.
"He's a horse who obviously stays well and he's come on a lot for his first run at Cheltenham.
"He's a big, burly horse and you can only do so much with him at home - he always takes a run or two to get fully fit.
"Off the weight he's on and with the ground the way it is, hopefully he goes there with a decent each-way chance."
Irish Grand National winner Lion Na Bearnai makes his first trip to Britain for trainer Thomas Gibney.
The County Meath handler admits the travelling and the fact this will be the 10-year-old's first run of the season are slight question marks.
"I think the race will suit him perfectly. He goes on any ground, we know he stays well and he has a nice racing weight," he said.
"The only real worry is that he hasn't had that prep run.
"I would definitely have preferred to have got that under his belt before coming here.
"He has never travelled out of Ireland before, so that's another little question mark."
The victory of Carruthers last year was a highlight of the season for many racing fans.
Owned and bred by the sadly-missed Lord Oaksey, the nine-year-old sparked emotional scenes as he triumphed off a mark just 3lb lower than this year.
His prep run at Cheltenham did not go to plan as he finished down the field but Sara Bradstock, wife of trainer Mark and daughter of Lord Oaksey, believes he is back on top form ahead.
She said: "He's in great form, as good a form as last year, if not better.
"It won't be easy, though, as we're near the top of the handicap and he's not a very big horse.
"He ran carrying top weight at Cheltenham last time and it was just too much for him - he's not very robust and just lacks that bit of strength for a big weight.
"The ground was testing that day and while we've always thought he likes soft ground, what he actually likes is it slowing the others down.
"The races he has won on heavy have been in small fields.
"I think going handicap chase pace on ground like that at Cheltenham was just too much for him.
"He goes on soft but it looks like it will be lovely ground at Newbury, which is amazing given all the rain we have had."
Looking back on last year, Bradstock added: "It was just an amazing day.
"It was a real victory for the little man as only have 15 horses and none of them cost over 30 grand.
"Let's hope he can run well again."
Hughes runs Magnanimity, who arrives here on the back of a good second behind Sizing Europe in the two-and-a-half-mile Clonmel Oil Chase.
The eight-year-old has not tasted victory since January 2011 but he will taking a step back up in trip here and will have the assistance of 5lb claimer Mark Enright.
"He's in great form, but I don't know about the ground," said Hughes.
"He doesn't want it heavy. He'd go well in the soft, but we'll keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best.
"He'll have no weight - we're claiming 5lb - so he'll only have 9st 12lb."
Tim Vaughan has had the Hennessy in mind for Saint Are since he won a Listed chase at Aintree back in April.
A Grade One hurdle winner at a novice, the six-year-old is viewed as a possible Grand National runner in the long term.
"We're very excited to have a runner in a big race like this and I think the trip and track will be perfect. We could do with it being a bit drier, but that can't be helped," said Vaughan
"He's had a racecourse gallop and looks a million dollars.
"Later on, the Grand National is in the back of my mind, but I'm not sure if he's a year too young for it at the moment."