Harchibald suffers setback


HORSE RACING: Leading Smurfit Champion Hurdle candidate Harchibald has suffered a setback which could keep him off the track for the remainder of the season.

The Noel Meade-trained seven-year-old is thought to have picked up the injury when finishing second to Brave Inca in the bewleyshotels.com December Festival Hurdle at Leopardstown on Thursday.

“After running the other day his foot was very sore the following morning,” said Meade.

“It appeared that something has gone into his tendon at the back of his pastern and he is in Troytown Hospital at the moment.

“He has had a general anaesthetic and has been operated on to remove whatever it is, which I suspect to probably be a bit of birch.

“I don't know what his prospects are for the rest of the season but it has to be dodgy.”