Faugheen ‘back at Christmas’

2015 Champion Hurdle hero Faugheen is now set to return at Christmas, with connections keen to wait until he's 'sparkling'.

Faugheen wins the Champion Hurdle in 2015.

Faugheen has not been seen since winning the Irish Champion Hurdle by 15 lengths in January, after which he suffered an injury and missed the defence of his title at Cheltenham in March.

He has only been beaten once in 13 races, by his Willie Mullins stablemate Nichols Canyon in last season's Morgiana Hurdle, but was forced to miss his planned comeback in this year's renewal of that Punchestown event with a bruised foot.

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Faugheen was also entered in the Bar One Racing Hatton's Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse on Sunday, but connections will instead bide their time.

Patrick Mullins, the trainer's assistant and son, said: "I Imagine we'll be aiming at Christmas with him. We'll just wait until he's really sparkling again.

"It was unfortunate we missed that bit of time with his bruised foot, but he is back riding out."

Faugheen has won the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton for the past two seasons, while there is also the option of the Ryanair Hurdle at Leopardstown.

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