THE Malise Nicolson Novices' Chase - the major race for inexperienced steeplechasers at Bangor-on-Dee on Friday - has attracted an entry from a most remarkable horse.
Majed, moved in the summer by his owners from champion trainer Martin Pipe to the stable of West Country rival Paul Nicholls, has run in the last two Grand Nationals and has never been far from controversy since switching to jumping fences from hurdles.
In 2002, the French-bred horse gained an entry in the world's greatest steeplechase at Aintree despite never having raced over fences in Britain.
It frustrated trainers such as Ginger McCain because his horse Amberleigh House, which had been prepared for the Grand National, was denied a run.
Majed, who has yet to win over fences either in France or Britain, fell.
Twelve months on and he defied his critics last April when he completed a clear round of the Aintree fences and finished 12th. Amberleigh House justified his trainer's confidence - coming third after getting into the race.
Now, while Majed continues his quest for a win over fences, Amberleigh House's reputation as a 'Liverpool horse' continues to grow.
The 11-year-old was pipped by the narrowest of margins in Sunday's Becher Chase at Aintree in a thrilling finish with Clan Royal.
That makes two runner-up spots and one victory for the horse in the last three renewals of the race run over the Grand National fences in November.
Amberleigh House's 2004 campaign revolves around another go at the Grand National in the spring.