Connections of Honeysuckle have successfully dominated out a tilt on the Mares’ Hurdle on the Cheltenham Competition, stating she is going to both bid for a 3rd Champion Hurdle victory or be retired.
Henry de Bromhead’s celebrity mare beat Benie Des Dieux in an epic Mares’ Hurdle in 2020 and has since returned to the Cotswolds to see off the boys within the Champion Hurdle in every of the previous two seasons.
Having suffered her first defeat in 17 races when bidding for a document fourth Hatton’s Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse final month, there have been ideas Honeysuckle might return in opposition to her personal intercourse at Prestbury Park this time period, as an alternative of taking up red-hot Champion Hurdle favorite Structure Hill.
However proprietor Kenny Alexander’s racing supervisor Peter Molony revealed on Sunday that isn’t the case, with a call on whether or not she is going to line up within the Champion Hurdle or be retired for broodmare duties hinging on how she performs in her bid for a fourth Irish Champion Hurdle success at Leopardstown subsequent month.
“Henry appears completely satisfied together with her so, contact wooden, we’ll see in Leopardstown in 4 weeks’ time,” Molony instructed Racing TV.
“In fact I used to be watching him (Structure Hill successful the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton). He is a beautiful horse and it should take an excellent efficiency to beat him.
“Honeysuckle been a beautiful servant to us and owes us completely nothing. All of us love her to bits and simply wish to get her house in a single piece.
“Kenny mentioned final 12 months, earlier than she was ever crushed, that if she wasn’t working to what we predict is her optimum she’ll be retired and that is the story.
“It’s going to be Champion Hurdle or retire her – one or the opposite.”