SPRINTER SACRE (FR)
- 7 b/br g Network (GER) – Fatima (FR) (Bayolidaan (FR))
- Form: 11/2113/11111–11
- Owner: Caroline Mould
- Breeder: Christophe Masle
High-class novice hurdler in 2011 and third in the Grade One William Supreme Novices' Hurdle at The Festival.
Unbeaten in seven phenomenal starts over fences since, with four Grade One wins headed by a spectacular success Racing Post Arkle Chase at The Festival last year. Returned this season to another impressive victory in the Grade One Sportingbet Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown Park.
Jump Race Record: Starts: 13; Wins: 11; 2nd: 1; 3rd: 1; Win & Place Prize Money: £302,701
Won the re-scheduled Grade One Victor Chandler Chase over an extended two miles at Cheltenham easily by 14 lengths on 26 January and is a very short-priced favourite for the Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase at The Festival.
Entries so far at The Festival (Distance – Value)
Grade One Sportingbet Queen Mother Champion Chase (13 March) 2m – £350,000
Henderson said: "He is in good form – we have those rather nasty three weeks to go. There is work to be done and there is a lot that can go wrong but at the moment everything is going well with him.
"He looks great and is very fresh and well in himself. He seems to be enjoying it and has had a good freshen up since the Victor Chandler Chase. The pressure is on because everybody will expect one of his flashy performances and I hope he can deliver again.
"He has not jumped anything since the Victor Chandler – we will just remind him what to do and not to get complacent. He finds it ridiculously easy but Cheltenham is Cheltenham and the course takes plenty of jumping.
"Barry (Geraghty) will go out and enjoy himself on Sprinter Sacre, who is as good looking a horse as I have ever had. He is a hugely-talented natural athlete.
"He and Simsonsig are two of the best work horses I have ever had. Sprinter Sacre will not go to a racecourse to work before Cheltenham.
"Sprinter Sacre is the one we would be disappointed with if he doesn't win. He has more than a chance – England expects!"
If Sprinter Sacre starts at shorter than 4/11 and wins, he will be the shortest-priced winner at The Festival since Arkle scored at 1/10 in 1966.