Leading Champion Hurdle hopes entered at Sandown
Yanworth: currently Britain's leading Champion Hurdle hope
PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos) Leading Champion Hurdle hopes to clash
By tony mcfadden 12:30AM 31 JAN 2017
The Listed contest could go some way to sorting out the pecking order for the Stan James Champion Hurdle, which has been blown wide open in the past week following news that last year's winner Annie Power is to miss the race through injury, while 2015 hero Faugheen will likely go straight there without a prep run.
Alan King's Yanworth, who won the Grade 1 Christmas Hurdle at Kempton on Boxing Day, is the general 3-1 second favourite for the Champion Hurdle. He has won six of his seven starts over hurdles, with his only defeat coming at the hands of Yorkhill in the Neptune Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham last year.
Brain Power, who easily won a seemingly-competitive Ascot handicap off a mark of 149 last time, has attracted support for the Champion Hurdle in recent days and is no bigger than 10-1.
Rayvin Black and Irving have both been entered, as has Buveur D'Air, who also has the option of the Grade 1 Betfred TV Scilly Isles Novices' Chase on the same card.
Buveur D'Air is a top price of 20-1 with BoyleSports for the Champion Hurdle, while he is 7-1 in places for the JLT Novices' Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, second choice behind Yorkhill.
Henderson could run exciting juvenile hurdler Charli Parcs in the Scottish Triumph Hurdle Trial at Musselburgh on Saturday. The four-year-old was a late non-runner at Cheltenham last weekend in a race won by Defi Du Seuil, who is also owned by JP McManus.
He could face Paul Nicholls' prolific winner Cliffs Of Dover as the six-time hurdles winner also features among the eight entries.
Charli Parcs is a top price of 9-1 for the Triumph Hurdle at the festival, but only 8-1 for the Supreme Novices' Hurdle.