Nicky Henderson admits he is facing a severe headache in keeping all his Champion Hurdle prospects apart during this wet winter.
While the trainer showed off three horses as possibilities for the williamhill.com Christmas Hurdle at Kempton as part of a press visit to his stable, Binocular appears the only one of the trio to be a certain runner there. JP McManus' slick gelding has landed the Grade One twice in a row, beating Rock On Ruby last Boxing Day before finishing fourth to him in the Champion itself.
"He'll definitely go straight to Kempton - he's in good form and might have a racecourse gallop," Henderson said.
From there, it gets tricky for a handler who has taken the Cheltenham crown five times already. Another of owner JP McManus' stars Darlan, who was second in the Supreme and then a winner at Aintree, has missed one possible outing because of the deep going at Cheltenham's Open meeting, and may lose out again in Saturday's StanJames.com Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle.
Henderson said: "I was talking to AP McCoy and we don't think he likes soft ground so we'd be loathe to run him at Newcastle. Even if it was called off and moved to Newbury, as they have done before, it would be heavy ground there too. I'm not sure JP would want to run them both at Kempton either. It's an impossible situation."
The trainer has pencilled in Grandouet for next month's StanJames.com International Hurdle at Cheltenham, the scene of his most recent outing and victory almost 12 months ago.
Henderson said: "Grandouet worked really well this morning and will go to Cheltenham. He injured a near-hind joint, but Barry Geraghty sat on him last week and said he felt great. If he runs at Cheltenham, he wouldn't go to Kempton."
Henderson pitched another smart hurdler into the mix in Cash And Go, who was second in the valuable handicap at the Open on his debut since leaving Edward O'Grady.
"I think he might be worth another run in a good handicap, so will go for the Ladbroke at Ascot, I suppose," he said.
Oscar Whisky will again run in the Relkeel Hurdle at next month's Cheltenham meeting.
22 October 2014Gosden a Fan of Newmarket scorer
Northern aces face off in Cumbria
December date for Balding memorial
Murphy plagued by shoulder injury
Dynaste charts direct Haydock route
O'Brien outlines Breeders' plans
Deputy outgunned at Fontwell
Wetherby-bound Taquin to duck Power
Whisky chasing Power spoils
High hopes for Adelaide run
Burke maps out Odeliz targets
Present sights set on Power prize
Gilgamboa waits on ground
New category for all-weather champs
Moviesta has sales date
National aim for O'Neill star
Cheltenham on Ginge agenda
Lewis eyeing Dubai success
Henderson handed Ascot role
Dandino misses Cup date
Panther given Breeders' go-ahead
Plain sailing for perfect Storm
Big Easy sets sail for Open fixture
Hall monitored for Giant Bolster
Stomachion in November frame
Hughes revels in 'sweet' success
BHA moves to address small fields
Connell turns to Heskin
Integral to race on next year
21 October 2014Storm breezes to Exeter victory
Moore concedes title to Hughes
Meade maps out gameplan for stars
Pele poised to tackle Hennessy
O'Neill sure of Taquin redemption
Heron seeking Great prize
Court to go on Trial
Saviour blow for Skelton
Dan makes chase debut
Moore waits on Grugy decision
O'Neill outlines That choices
Conn possible for Auction bid
Power team weigh up options
Bangor cancel schooling card
No rushing back for Long Run
Dynaste leads Old Roan contenders
Grands Crus retired
Exciting Berlais heads to Chepstow
Force handed Hong Kong mission
Park favourite for Trophy hunt
Al Kazeem team eye Hong Kong trip
Commemorative bound for Breeders'
Slade eyeing victorious swansong
20 October 2014Chelmsford City handed 58 fixtures
Alderwood to take two-mile test
Dynaste leads Old Roan contenders
Hennessy aim for Clouds
Fiesolana on Breeders' trail
High-class possibilities for Trophy
Chelmsford City handed 57 fixtures
French option for Maarek
Billy back for chasing bow
Judge to bid for Breeders' glory
Pipe mulls Moon target
High hopes for Holywell
Judge in Breeders' frame
Hill stars for Stoute and Moore
Gabriel lifts Garnet for Deegan
New One back with a win
Light career hangs in balance
Stars shines on hurdling debut
King big guns ready to start
Tullius camp consider options
Doyle unlikely to appeal Ascot ban
Mullins prepares formidable team
19 October 2014New One breezes to victory
Lavelle has Becher plan for Lodge
Riches heading on road north
Down Royal plan for Tiger
New makes Kempton return
Panther hunting Canadian prize