Hidden Cyclone looks to make amends

John ’Shark’ Hanlon is hoping Hidden Cyclone can show his true colours in the BoyleSports Champion Chase at Punchestown on April 28.

The 10-year-old disappointed his supporters when falling at the fifth fence after being a well-backed favourite last year.

Though he won the Boylesports Tied Cottage Chase at Punchestown in February, Hidden Cyclone turned in a below-par run in the Ryanair Chase at Cheltenham where he sustained a slight injury.

“Hidden Cyclone is great and Punchestown is definitely the aim,” said Hanlon.

“We wanted to go to Fairyhouse with him but he wasn’t quite ready after the bad cut he picked up in Cheltenham. It has healed up nicely now though and he is back in great old form.

“I’ve put a line through his run at Cheltenham. I think he hit himself jumping the second and he didn’t jump well after that. He is normally a sound jumper so I would say he was feeling it.

“Two miles at Punchestown suits him well, as he proved in the Tied Cottage, and hopefully he will run another big race.”

Hidden Cyclone is among 22 entries that include a strong team from the Willie Mullins’ stable among them being Un De Sceaux, Vautour, Champagne Fever and Twinlight.

Henry de Bromhead’s evergreen veteran Sizing Europe could try to win the race for a third time after his victories in 2012 and 2014 while Gordon Elliott has put in his Aintree scorers, Clarcam and Don Cossack.

Among five British-trained possibles is David Bridgwater’s Oscar Hill, an easy handicap winner at Chepstow last time out.

“Oscar Hill is the BoyleSports Champion Chase and will also have entries in the handicaps,” said the Cheltenham handler.

“The Grade One might be flying a bit too high but we will see what is looking likely to run nearer the time.”

Meanwhile, Douvan, exceptional winner of the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham, heads 18 entries for the Grade One Herald Champion Novice Hurdle at Punchestown on April 28.

The Willie Mullins-trained five-year-old could bid to emulate his stablemate Faugheen who took this prize last season and has gone on to lift the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham.

Among his potential opponents are stablemates Shaneshill, who was second in the Supreme, and Nichols Canyon, a Grade One winner at Aintree on Saturday.

Newmarket trainer John Ferguson has three entries — Parlour Games, runner-up to Nichols Canyon at Aintree, plus Commissioned and Qewy.

The 20 entries for the Grade One Growise Champion Novice Chase on the same card include the Mullins-trained Don Poli and Vautour, winners of the RSA Chase and JLT Chase at Cheltenham, while Enda Bolger has put in his Ryanair Gold Cup Novice Chase hero Gilgamboa.

Dermot Weld’s top-class dual-purpose performer Windsor Park, who followed up a Cheltenham Festival victory with a Flat win at Gowran, could also line up.

Alan King is considering bringing over Carraig Mor, runner-up in the Mildmay Novices’ Chase at Aintree. The other British-trained entries are Ainsi Fideles, Carole’s Destrier and Irish Cavalier.

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