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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Champion Flame burning brightHeadlines
Countrywide Flame

John Quinn remains adamant Countrywide Flame is capable of making his presence felt in the Stan James Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham in March.

A 33-1 winner of the Triumph Hurdle last season, the five-year-old won at Chester and was narrowly denied in the Cesarewitch on the Flat last year before making a fine return to the jumping game in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle.

He was a disappointing favourite on his latest appearance in the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton, but Quinn has not lost any faith in his stable star and is confident he will show his true colours at the Festival.

He is likely to take in the Morebattle Hurdle at Kelso on February 14 before his return to Prestbury Park.

"He's in very good form and he will probably go up to Kelso for the Morebattle," said Quinn.

"We're definitely still aiming at the Champion Hurdle with him.

"We've put a line through his run at Christmas and we know he loves Cheltenham, so we're very much looking forward to it.

"I think there are one or two horses who have been hyped up for one reason or another and I'm quite happy with my horse at the moment."

Countrywide Flame is 20-1 with William Hill for the Champion Hurdle on March 12.

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