Champagne kept on ice

  • Last Updated: February 14 2014, 13:41 GMT

Champagne Fever will head to the Cheltenham Festival without another run after he was not declared for the Flyingbolt Novice Chase at Navan on Sunday.

Champagne Fever: Won't run at Navan on Sunday
Champagne Fever: Won't run at Navan on Sunday

Willie Mullins is not 100% happy with the Rich Ricci-owned grey, with Ireland's champion trainer now likely to finalise his preparation with another racecourse gallop.

The dual Festival winner was also a late withdrawal from the Dr PJ Moriarty Chase last weekend and is likely to compete in the Arkle, for which he is ante-post favourite, off the back of just two runs over fences, one of which having ended in defeat.

"I'm just not quite happy with him," said Mullins.

"I've decided to wait and he'll probably go to Cheltenham now without another run.

"We're leaning towards the Arkle with him but we have not made a final decision as yet.

"I'd imagine we'll give him a racecourse gallop somewhere in the meantime."

Dessie Hughes trains two of the five declared runners for the Flyingbolt, with the highly-regarded Bright New Dawn joined by Some Tikket.

Bright New Dawn was second to Mullins' Djakadam over two miles and five furlongs at Leopardstown last month and drops down in trip to two miles and a furlong.

Some Tikket won his last race at Gowran.

Shrapnel, owned, like Bright New Dawn, by Gigginstown House Stud, has been declared by Gordon Elliott.

Irish Thistle and Mallowney complete the field.


New Sky Bet customers: Free matched bet up to £30