Binocular Out Of 2011 Champion Hurdle


Tagged under: 3.20 Stan James Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy (Grade 1)

The ante-post favourite and last year's winner Binocular has not been declared for the Champion Hurdle which takes place at Cheltenham on Tuesday .

11 runners were declared for the race this morning but the Nicky Henderson trained Binocular was not one of them and Menorah is the new favourite for the race which is the Championship race of the season for hurdlers . This morning Henderson said"We have very regretfully had to decide not to declare Binocular for Tuesday's Champion Hurdle."

Henderson explained the reasoning behind the decision as follows :He had an allergy two weeks ago that did not respond to initial medication and on veterinary advice and well within normal parameters he required a further treatment the following day.As we were getting close to the most important race of the year and also because since that administration to Binocular, another horse had tested positive for the same substance, I thought it prudent to take a precautionary test which not only surprisingly, let alone devastatingly, has also shown to be positive."

Binocular is owned by leading NH owner JP McManus and was due to be ridden by Champion jockey Tony McCoy. Bookmakers are currently re-forming the market but it is likely that Menorah will be favourite with Peddlers Cross and the Irish trained Hurricane Fly also very well fancied .

The news is a major disappointment as it does take away some of the gloss from the Championship race . The writing was on the wall earlier this morning when Binocular drifted out to 9/1 to win the Champion Hurdle on Betfair before news of the withdrawal broke .

Last year Binocular had been ruled out of the race by Henderson months before suprisingly being included in the final declarations . This year the reverse has happened but on both occasions the news release has come to late for many unwitting Betfair punters .

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