CHAMPION trainer Nicky Henderson is considering the possibility of starting Long Run’s campaign in the Bet365 Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby on Saturday, November 2.
It had been expected the dual King George winner – and 2011 Gold Cup winner – would begin his campaign in the Betfair Chase at Haydock on November 23.
However, the possibility of a trip to West Yorkshire will be discussed with his owner Robert Waley-Cohen next week.
“Long Run worked this morning and he’ll probably go along with Bobs Worth to the Betfair, but the Charlie Hall is still there as well at Wetherby. That’s three weeks before and he might just be ready for that. I want to talk to Robert about it,” said Henderson yesterday.
Malton trainer John Quinn’s Countrywide Flame, third in last season’s Champion Hurdle, is out for the season after a stress fracture was diagnosed.
The 2012 JCB Triumph Hurdle winner at the Cheltenham Festival under Dougie Costello, his setback is a bitter blow to the stable.
“He kept going intermittently lame, so we got him bone-scanned and there was a shadow on a hind joint, which highlighted a stress fracture,” said the trainer.
“He’s going to need three months off, but he’s too good a horse to rush, so we’ll give him six.”