Champ on track for Ballymore showdown

Stablemate Birchdale also among 41 confirmations

  • Thursday 07 March
  • News
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Champ is on course to try to take his winning sequence to five in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham.

Nicky Henderson’s charge, who lifted the Grade One Challow Novices’ Hurdle at Newbury on his latest start, is among 41 still in Wednesday’s two-mile-five-furlong contest after the confirmation stage.

Henderson has also left in Birchdale, who also holds an entry in the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle over three miles on Friday week.

Leading Ballymore fancies include the Gordon Elliott-trained Battleoverdoyen, Olly Murphy’s BrewinUpastorm and Willie Mullins’ Klassical Dream.

Elliott’s Grand National hero Tiger Roll is set to have his final run before a bid to repeat his Aintree heroics next month in the Glenfarclas chase – for which 22 remain. He won the three-and-three-quarter-mile cross country contest 12 months ago, and returns on the back of victory in the Boyne Hurdle at Navan.

Enda Bolger’s Josies Orders, successful in 2016, could try again – along with stablemate Auvergnat, who took the valuable Paddy Power Handicap Chase at Leopardstown over Christmas.

Mullins’ Uradel, the ante-post favourite, is among 69 horses standing their ground in the Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle.

Torpillo, trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies, heads the weights for the Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle – in which 48 remain.

They include market leader Band Of Outlaws, from Joseph O’Brien’s yard.

Elliott has another major player in the Cheveley Park-owned Envoi Allen in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper.

The five-year-old, who has won all his three races in that sphere, heads the market with Blue Sari, winner of his only start. The four-year-old is the only one of the 18 possibles from the Mullins yard which has taken this prize nine times.

Champ on track for Ballymore showdown

Cheltenham 13:30, 13 March 2019

Cheltenham 13:30, 13 March 2019

Cheltenham 13:30, 13 March 2019

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