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RACING: Star all set for Haydock
12:32pm Thursday 10th January 2013 in Sport
BARBURY Castle trainer Alan King's horse Raya Star is set to turn out for the StanJames.com Champion Hurdle Trial at Haydock on Saturday week.
The seven-year-old has taken his game to another level this term, winning a valuable Ascot handicap, chasing home Oscar Whisky in the Coral Hurdle and finishing second behind Darlan in the Christmas Hurdle.
Connections can rightly look forward to a tilt at the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham in March, but are likely to know far more after running him at Haydock.
"Raya Star has had a break since Christmas and seems in good form with himself," said trainer King.
"At the moment we are looking at running him in the Champion Hurdle Trial at Haydock on Saturday week.
"That is probably where he'll go."
King is scouring the programme book for a suitable opportunity for Balder Succes following his disappointing display in The Ladbroke at Ascot last month.
"Balder Succes seems fine, but I'm struggling to find a race for him," said the Barbury Castle trainer.
"I'm trying to find a race for him where there aren't many runners as he seems to get worried when he runs in a big field, like he did in The Ladbroke.
"He could get an entry for Haydock as well, but I wouldn't want to run the two of them against each other."
Sprinter Sacre is one of just 17 entries in the Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham on March 13.
Nicky Henderson's giant was an easy winner of the Arkle last March and will attempt to follow in the footsteps of Sizing Europe who landed the two races in successive seasons.
Henderson has also entered last year's winner Finian's Rainbow, who has only been seen once this season when disappointing at Ascot, and the exciting Simonsig, who is currently a red-hot favourite for the Arkle.
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