Belfast Telegraph

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Bino ready for action despite fears

Nicky Henderson believes the soft ground at Kempton could dent Binocular's greatest asset in the Christmas Hurdle.

A schooling session on Thursday under champion jockey Tony McCoy filled the trainer with confidence, but he does suggest Binocular's whole season is being built around the defence of his Champion Hurdle crown.

"Very soft ground doesn't really help Binocular bring his strength out, and that is his jumping," said the Seven Barrows handler.

"AP schooled him and it is electrifying (to see). It's very exciting. I think AP and the horse enjoy it, but it's terrifying for me to watch!

"He's lighter than he was three weeks ago. He's big and well still, but it's still a long way until March and I think we are all aware of that. There is one major target, but we'd like this along the way if we could get it.

"Kempton is a speed track and there are a lot of hold-up horses in this race and it's going to come down to speed. It's not that he's slow by any manner of means, he just wants a really strong run race. That's why Cheltenham suits him."


From Belfast Telegraph