Cheltenham next for Jezki

Sun 13th Jan 2013, 19:12

©Healy Racing Photos
Jessica Harrington has confirmed her Supreme Novices' Hurdle favourite Jezki is set to head straight to the Cheltenham Festival in March without another run.

The five-year-old stretched his unbeaten record over hurdles to four with a brilliant display at Leopardstown over the Christmas period and leading owner JP McManus has since purchased the gelding.

Harrington suggested immediately after his Leopardstown romp that Jezki could return to Leopardstown for next month's Deloitte Novice Hurdle, but she has now decided to keep him fresh for his big day in March.

"He will be a better horse on better ground. I know it's down that he might run in the Deloitte, but I think that's unlikely. He will probably go straight to Cheltenham," Harrington told At The Races.

"I haven't really talked to Frank Berry (McManus' racing manager) yet, but the horse was always going to have a bit of a break now and we're basically going to train him for Cheltenham and then Punchestown."

Regarding the change of ownership, Harrington said: "I'm just the trainer and I'm delighted the horse has changed hands and is staying in the yard, which for me is the most important thing."

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There is not much attention given to national hunt racing in the summer months, by punters or by the media. It is, of course, understandable given that our attention is focused on the flat season: the action at Royal Ascot, the Classics and the rest of the elements that define the summer racing season. Some punters might have a dabble at an ante post bet for Cheltenham next year, but by and large we forget about it until the autumn.