Faugheen hot favourite again for Stan James Champion Hurdle

Defending champion Faugheen (Willie Mullins), the 4/7 favourite with Stan James, stars among 19 entries for the Grade One Stan James Champion Hurdle, the £400,000 feature race on the opening day of The Festival, Champion Day, Tuesday, March 15 at Cheltenham. Faugheen powered home in the extended two-mile hurdle championship contest in 2015 by a length and a half from his stable companion Arctic Fire (10/1), who is entered once again. The eight-year-old is after his third consecutive victory at The Festival, having taken the…

Whittington targeting “exciting” Affaire D’Honneur at Newbury’s Betfair Hurdle

Weights are unveiled today for the £155,000 Betfair Hurdle, Britain’s richest handicap hurdle, which takes place at Newbury on Betfair Super Saturday, February 13. Last year’s Grade One Triumph Hurdle hero Peace And Co (Nicky Henderson, 16/1 with Betfair) heads the weights on 11st 12lb, followed on 11st 10lb by Sempre Medici (Willie Mullins IRE, 16/1), who was last seen out when landing a Grade Three hurdle at Naas on January 16, and Sign Of A Victory (11st 6lb, Nicky Henderson, 20/1), a Listed winner…

First Newbury runners for Sam Thomas tomorrow

Newbury Racecourse is scheduled to stage its first fixture of 2016 tomorrow, Wednesday, January 20, with a six-race card running from 1.25pm to 4.20pm. An intriguing contest is the cards for the £7,000 Betfred January Sale British Stallions Studs EBF Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (3.45pm, seven runners). The field is headed by Hollies Pearl (Peter Bowen/Sean Bowen), who landed the Listed mares’ bumper at Aintree last season and was a winner on her hurdling debut at Chepstow in October. Mia’s Storm (Alan King/Wayne Hutchinson) has also…

Hamelin out to secure Good Friday place in 32Red.com Conditions Stakes at Lingfield Park on Saturday

First-season trainer George Scott is looking forward to seeing Hamelin step up to two miles for the first time in the £19,000 32Red.com Conditions Stakes (2.55pm) at Lingfield Park on Saturday, January 23. The Polytrack contest, which has attracted 12 entries, is a Fast-Track Qualifier for the £150,000 32Red All-Weather Marathon Championships Conditions Stakes over the same course and distance on All-Weather Championships Finals Day, Good Friday, March 25. Hamelin has been runner-up in 12-furlong Listed races on the Polytrack of Kempton Park on his…

Million options for Sky Bet Supreme Trial at Haydock Park on Saturday

The fourth contest in Sky Bet’s “Road To Cheltenham” takes places at Haydock Park this Saturday, January 23. The £30,000 Sky Bet Supreme Trial Novices’ Hurdle (due off at 2.05pm) is staged over two miles and has attracted 12 five-day entries today. Le Prezien (Paul Nicholls, 2/1 favourite with Sky Bet) has won his last two starts impressively at Ludlow (December 16) and Doncaster, scoring by a facile 19 lengths on Town Moor last time out on January 8. He was second on his hurdling…

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