La Bague Au Roi all set for Mares' Hurdle

ASCOT, ENGLAND - JANUARY 20:  Noel Fehily riding La Bague Au Roi clear the last to win The Maresâ Hurdle Race at Ascot Racecourse on January 20,

Warren Greatrex has confirmed that La Bague Au Roi will drop back in trip for the OLBG Mares' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival on Tuesday.

The Lambourn handler feels the seven-year-old will be more competitive in the two-and-a-half mile Grade One event than in the Sun Bets' Stayers Hurdle.

He said: "La Bague Au Roi goes for the mares' race. We deliberated about it and we felt it was her best chance of winning a race at the Festival.

"It was an easy decision to make in the end with more horses coming into the Stayers' Hurdle and with the weather the way it has been."

After having won a brace of Listed races on her first two starts of the season, La Bague Au Roi then claimed the biggest success of her career in a Grade Two at Ascot last time.

Greatrex said: "We are looking forward to running her and Richard Johnson will ride her."

La Bague Au Roi will be joined on the opening day of the meeting by stablemate Western Ryder, who will revert to two miles for the Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle as opposed to running in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle 24 hours later.

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He added: "You are going to need to stay very well and I think he would have his best chance in the Supreme."

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