Champion Hurdle Stars Could Line Up In Contenders

Sandown Park's Contenders Hurdle could well see some of the leading lights in the Champion Hurdle betting put their finishing touches to their Cheltenham Festival plans and will hope that they can have a positive final prep race before embarking on the Prestbury Park trail.

Harry Fry has elected to hand reigning Champion Hurdler an entry in the Listed event, which has be won before by the likes of Binocular, Rooster Booster and Detroit City, but it's unsure whether he will take his place in the field as he may opt for improved conditions later on in February.

Nicky Henderson has entered a brace of star perfromers as he looks to win the event again and he could well hand impressive Christmas Hurdle winner Darlan a tilt at the contest as he looks to challenge Hurricane Fly for favouritism in the Cheltenham race, after the Irish raider produced a superb effort in the Irish Champion at the weekend.

Meanwhile, Henderson also has the option of letting International Hurdle runner-up Grandouet take his place in the contest after his initial engagement in the Champion Hurdle Trial at Doncaster was forced to be abandoned and he will now look for another option for the Grade One-winning novice.

Of the others starring in a stellar list of entries for the 2m contest, Alan King could hand Balder Succes a tilt at some of the creme de la creme of the hurdling sphere, whilst the exciting novice Vasco D'ycy and Paul Nicholls' stalwart could also take their chance in what could be an informative renewal/

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