Aintree aim for Solwhit
No Cheltenham bid for Byrnes ace
Last Updated: 04/01/11 12:52pm
Solwhit: Aintree not Cheltenham the spring target.
Solwhit will be aimed at the Aintree Hurdle after Leopardstown rather than Cheltenham reports trainer Charles Byrnes.
Byrne's stable star won the Liverpool feature in 2009 but after winning the Irish Champion Hurdle last season, his spring campaign included runs at Cheltenham and Punchestown.
However a different approach is being taken by his trainer this year.
"He'll head to the BHP Insurances Irish Champion Hurdle," Byrnes told sportinglife.com.
"He'll be saved for the Aintree Hurdle after that instead of heading to Cheltenham. He'd have a great chance in that."
The seven-year-old has not been out of the first two in his last four starts, and is reported to be in good shape after his latest run in the paddypower.com iPhone App Festival Hurdle at Leopardstown.
"He came out of the race very well and we're very happy with him," the Co. Limerick trainer said.
The son of Solon has won 12 of his 22 starts, however he has found Hurricane Fly an unbeatable nemesis on three of his last four starts, and Byrnes is not confident of turning the tables on him at Leopardstown.
"I'm not sure we'll be able to beat him (Hurricane Fly) but running second to him is no disgrace and the prize money is good.
"There's £22,000 for finishing second (in the Irish Champion Hurdle) and if we can pick that up then we'll be more than happy," he added.