Sprinter Sacre set for Newbury visit

RACING: Sprinter Sacre will parade at Newbury today – complete with his heart monitor – as steeplechasing’s superstar continues his recovery ahead of next month’s BetVictor Queen Mother Champion Chase.

Nicky Henderson’s horse-of-a-lifetime is still the ante-post favourite for this two mile championship, even though he pulled up abruptly at Kempton on December 27 with a fibrillating heart.

That has now righted itself and the seven-times Grade One winner is gradually returning to full-speed work, with the option of a full racecourse gallop on the horizon.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

As part of Sprinter Sacre’s convalescence, he will parade in the paddock at Newbury as Henderson looks to keep the horse active.

If he does get to Cheltenham, and the vibes have been slightly more positive from work rider Nico de Boinville and others, Sprinter Sacre will not have had the benefit of a prep race.

After completing his latest piece of exercise yesterday on the gallops at Seven Barrows, Henderson – the reigning champion trainer – observed: “Sprinter was very good this morning, he did everything we wanted.

“He had his heart monitor on this morning and it was all fine.

“Saturday is his rest day anyway, so we’re just going to take him on an away day to Newbury. It’s just down the road and he’ll walk around the paddock for 10 minutes. We just want him to have a nice experience of going away again.”

Provisional discussions are understood to have taken place about a possible racecourse gallop at Kempton on February 22.