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Weather set to spoil Darlan warm-up plans

Published 31/01/2013 | 05:00

Leading Champion Hurdle hope Darlan could be forced to miss his intended prep run at Sandown this weekend after clerk of the course Andrew Cooper called an inspection of the hurdle track for 3.0 today.

Nicky Henderson's brilliant winner of Kempton's Christmas Hurdle is second favourite for the Champion Hurdle and connections were hoping to enhance those claims in Saturday's Betfred Mobile Sports Contenders Hurdle.

However, with Cooper describing Sandown's hurdle course as "vulnerable," the course has contingency plans in place to stage an all-chase card.

Sandown is not the only course hit by the rain, with Southwell's jumps meeting on Monday already abandoned. Southwell's loss is Doncaster's gain as they are set to stage a new meeting on Monday with a Listed hurdle scheduled.

Meanwhile, Brian Meehan's St James's Palace Stakes scorer Most Improved has joined Aidan O'Brien after being bought by Coolmore's John Magnier.

The son of Lawman was fancied for last season's English 2,000 Guineas amid reports of sparkling workouts, but injury hampered his season. He suffered a troubled passage when making his three-year-old debut at Chantilly, before grabbing Group One glory under Kieren Fallon at Royal Ascot.

Irish Independent

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