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Sprinter Sacre ruled out of Tingle Creek Chase

ESPN staff
December 5, 2013 « April deadline set for World Cup stadium | Chartbeat test »
Sprinter Sacre could now run in the Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton or the Clarence House Chase on January 18 © Getty Images
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Nicky Henderson has been forced to pull Sprinter Sacre out of the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown on Saturday.

On Tuesday, the champion trainer revealed his star horse had returned a dirty tracheal wash and that he would wait until Thursday to make the decision on whether to run him.

However, Henderson revealed he would not declare Sprinter Sacre - who is unbeaten over fences - for the Grade One race following several discussions with vets and owner Caroline Mould.

The Seven Barrows trainer is now looking towards the Clarence House Chase (formerly the Victor Chandler Chase) on January 18, but has not ruled out the possibility of running Sprinter Sacre in the Desert Orchid Chase over Christmas.

"We've taken the decision not to run. We've re-tested him and just got the results back," Henderson said. "Having spoken to all the vets possible and his owner Caroline Mould, we've decided not to go.

"His figures have improved quite dramatically since Monday but there was just one figure that was causing us concern. I had a figure in my mind that I wanted to see today and it just wasn't quite there.

"We can't take any chances with him and having told everyone earlier in the week that he had a problem and if we ran him and god forbid something happened, then everyone would ask what we are doing running him.

"I suppose there's the Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton but we'll probably wait for the Victor Chandler [Clarence House] Chase now. Now we can get him on some medication and it is the sort of thing that will clear up in no time but obviously we couldn't give him anything earlier in the week.

"Nico De Boinville rides him every day and having ridden him this morning he said he still looks and feels fantastic and that he was in tip-top form and that you could never tell externally that there was a little something amiss.

"However, sadly we'll have to bypass the weekend. It's marginal and we'd always wanted to start here but we'll have to make a new plan. It's very disappointing for everybody but Captain Conan will take his place and he's a horse on the upgrade."

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