bet365 Racing News
Saturday 9th December 2017

Douvan on Mullins' Christmas list

December 9 Having elected to sidestep the Tingle Creek at Sandown, Willie Mullins now anticipates a seasonal reappearance for Douvan will come at Leopardstown over Christmas.

© Caroline Norris

The Rich Ricci-owned seven-year-old hasn't run since losing his unbeaten record in the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham in March.

That was Douvan's sole reverse in 14 career starts and Mullins had pin-pointed the Tingle Creek for a potential comeback run.

Despite his assertion that Douvan did a 'fantastic bit of work on Tuesday' at the Curragh, Mullins wasn't willing to send him to Sandown.

He also held an entry in the Hilly Way Chase at Cork on Sunday, but that too will be skipped.

"Douvan did a fantastic bit of work on Tuesday and rode out yesterday (Wednesday) and today and I just wasn't happy with him," said Mullins.

"We couldn't get the ferry this morning, it wasn't going to be a ferry until tonight, which I wasn't too pushed about anyhow, and I decided if I wasn't going to run him Saturday, he won't run Sunday at Cork either. 

"We'll just wait and hopefully have him right for Christmas. I imagine he'll run at Leopardstown."

With Douvan missing out, Colin Tizzard's Champion Chase runner-up Fox Norton is 8/13 to win the Tingle Creek. He warmed up last month by winning a second successive renewal of the Shloer Chase at Cheltenham, taking the measure of Champion Chaser Special Tiara as he did.

Robbie Power will replace the injured Bryan Cooper on Fox Norton at Sandown.

Douvan meanwhile trades at 11/4 to win the two-mile Championship race at the Cheltenham Festival in March, with last year's unbeaten Racing Post Arkle winner Altior currently 6/4 to hand champion trainer Nicky Henderson victory in the Queen Mother Champion Chase.

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