Nicky Henderson rates Faugheen danger to Buveur D'Air

Faugheen is about to be overhauled by Supasundae at Leopardstown
Faugheen is about to be overhauled by Supasundae at Leopardstown

Nicky Henderson still considers Faugheen a big danger to Buveur D'Air in the Unibet Champion Hurdle at next month's Cheltenham Festival.

The Willie Mullins-trained 10-year-old suffered his second successive odds-on defeat of the season in the Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown last Saturday. 

Henderson said: "A Faugheen-Buveur D'Air clash with them both at their peak form would have been a big draw. It does make it look a bit easier now, but you can never underestimate Faugheen. He is a very good horse and Willie (Mullins) is a very good trainer. He knows where he is."


Unibet Champion Hurdle - Sky Bet odds (non-runner/no bet)
2/5 Buveur D'Air
6 Faugheen
8 Bar


Plans are in place to give Buveur D'Air, who registered back-to-back victories in the Contenders Hurdle at Sandown on Saturday, a racecourse gallop ahead of the defence of his title at Prestbury Park on March 13.

Henderson said: "I could have done with a little bit of a harder race really. It would have been better to push him out instead of pulling him up, but it was fine and exactly what we wanted and I'm not complaining.

"He is a horse that needs plenty of work. Barry (Geraghty) said he was still taking blows. He will go to a racecourse for a gallop, but he won't go to Newbury this weekend. I wouldn't mind going somewhere on grass rather than on the all weather because he loves that soft ground.

"If there was somewhere I could gallop around grass in two weeks time, I would like to do that. He will go to a racecourse for a gallop, there is no doubt about that.

"Whereas I could go to Cheltenham with Altior or Might Bite without a run, I couldn't go there without him having a run. He hasn't had a race as such this season and that is the worry. He is a brute and you have to fire work into him. You have got to really be on top of him."

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