Sport Horse Racing

Saturday 20 January 2018

Oscar Whisky set for return to Cheltenham

Sue Montgomery

Oscar Whisky is the star among 10 entries for the Relkeel Hurdle at Cheltenham on Saturday.

Nicky Henderson's six-year-old finished third in the Champion Hurdle last March and looked set to give subsequent Fighting Fifth winner Overturn a run for his money on his return at Ascot before falling at the last.

Henderson has stated his desire to avoid a clash with Big Buck's before the World Hurdle at the Festival, which would mean he is far more likely to take up this engagement rather than wait for the Long Walk at Ascot a week later.

David Pipe has entered Dynaste, a most impressive winner over the fixed brush hurdles at Haydock, while Paul Nicholls has entered The Knoxs. Donald McCain has Any Given Day, second to Karabak last season, and Drill Sergeant in the race.

The International Hurdle on the same card has been reopened as insufficient entries were received.

Meanwhile, Snow Fairy has made it safely back to her Newmarket base after sustaining an injury in Hong Kong, and the four-year-old filly is set to race again next season.

Last year's Epsom Oaks winner, trained by Ed Dunlop, was being prepared for a tilt at Sunday's Hong Kong Vase at Sha Tin when she picked up an injury to her left foreleg during a routine canter.

Earlier this year, she hurt her right foreleg when in Dubai, a setback which kept her off the track until July, and her reappearance as a five-year-old is similarly not likely to be until the summer.

"Her injury will require a fair amount of time to heal," reported Dunlop yesterday, "but she's been examined by our vet and the decision has been made that she won't be retired." (© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent

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