Ground to take a hand in Defi Du Seuil Festival target

Philip Hobbs looking at Arkle and JLT options

  • Sunday 13 January
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Philip Hobbs says ground conditions will help determine which race Defi Du Seuil contests at the Cheltenham Festival.

The Minehead handler intends to give the multiple Grade One winning-hurdler another outing over fences ahead of the March feature, but is yet to decide whether to keep him at two and a half miles for the JLT or drop him back in trip for the Arkle.

After opening his chasing account at Exeter on his penultimate start, the JP McManus-owned six-year-old found only Lostintranslation too strong in a Grade Two at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day.

Hobbs said: “Barry Geraghty thought that two and a half miles was his trip. If the ground was soft, he has got plenty of pace over two miles. I think we are flexible.

“It depends on the ground and what is going to run in the two races. He would run again before Cheltenham and I expect it will just be the once more.

“I’ve not discussed with them yet what is going to happen. I think we will see how the horse gets on over the next week.”

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