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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Darlan ruled out of Cheltenham heatHeadlines
Darlan

Darlan will not run in the Racing Post Hurdle at Cheltenham on Sunday due to ground conditions.

Conditions were officially changed to soft, heavy in places following Saturday's Paddy Power Gold Cup, prompting Nicky Henderson to take stablemate Sprinter Sacre out of the Shloer Chase.

The Lambourn trainer was then left harbouring serious concerns over Darlan, and he confirmed to Press Association Sport: "We have talked about it and I have confirmed Darlan will not run either. They are all in great form, it's disappointing for everybody and it's disappointing for us, we were looking forward to seeing him them run."

Henderson went on: "It's gone very soft, it's no-one's fault, it's been unseasonably wet and everything else.

"The Fighting Fifth (at Newcastle on December 1) in all probability would be the obvious thing to do with Darlan or the International or the Christmas Hurdle, but Binocular will be back for the Christmas. We'll have to jig it around and it doesn't help I must admit.

"I think they would handle the ground but we don't need to do this on their first runs."

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