Skip to content

Champion Hurdle: Adagio on course for Cheltenham bid after Wincanton second behind Goshen

Adagio has now finished second in his last four starts; he was beaten in Grade One company at Cheltenham and Aintree, before a good second in the Greatwood Hurdle earlier this month; he now heads straight for the Champion Hurdle

Adagio produced a fine performance to be second after carrying top weight in the Greatwood Handicap Hurdle
Image: Adagio - booked Cheltenham Festival spot with decent second at Wincanton

David Pipe has confirmed Adagio is firmly on course for a tilt at the Unibet Champion Hurdle following his encouraging return to action at Wincanton on Saturday.

A Grade One winner in the Finale Juvenile Hurdle at Chepstow last season, the five-year-old went on to finish second in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham and at Aintree.

He again had to make do with the runner-up spot on his seasonal debut in the Greatwood Hurdle in November, and had to miss the International the following month after suffering a minor setback.

Quilixios and Rachael Blackmore defeats Adagio in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham
Image: Quilixios and Rachael Blackmore defeats Adagio in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham

Pipe warned that his stable star would improve for his comeback run in the Kingwell Hurdle and having looked the most likely winner early in the straight, he was ultimately outgunned by Goshen.

"He seems to have come out of it all right. He ran a decent race and all roads lead to the Festival now," said the Pond House handler.

"I think he deserves to take his chance in the Champion Hurdle and that would be the plan.

Goshen ridden by jockey Jamie Moore leads at Sandown
Image: Goshen ridden by jockey Jamie Moore leads at Sandown earlier this month

"Outside of Honeysuckle it's an open race. A lot can happen between now and Cheltenham and I'm not sure who'll turn up, but obviously they've all got Honeysuckle to beat."

Also See:

With autumn wind surgery delaying his reappearance and a subsequent injury keeping him off the track for a further three months, Pipe is praying for an incident-free three weeks.

"We just want a clear run now," he added. "We'll worry about our horse and not worry about the others."

Around Sky