Sire Du Berlais still set on Liverpool Hurdle defence
The 11-year-old was a surprise 16/1 winner last year and created another shock when triumphing in the Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham as a 33/1 shot earlier this month.
He had shown little in four previous starts, but Frank Berry, racing manager to owner JP McManus, says connections are keen to head back to Merseyside now. "It was a fantastic result," Berry said. "He was in great form and all credit to Gordon Elliott and his team. "He has come out of the race good and the plan is now to go to Aintree."
Zenta, a close-up third to Lossiemouth in the Triumph Hurdle, also looks set to run at Aintree.
The Willie Mullins-trained four-year-old, who took a Grade Three at Fairyhouse in February, was only just run out of second place by Gala Marceau. Berry added: "While it is a bit up in the air at the moment, if all was well with her, I'd say she will go to Aintree." However, one runner not due to make the trip is Corbetts Cross, who ran out when well in contention at the final flight in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle. The Emmet Mullins-trained six-year-old was snapped up by McManus ahead of his Festival run but while things did not go according to plan at Cheltenham, connections will not bid for compensation this term. Berry, said: "There was a bit of a gap in the railing and he just copped it. He came back OK, but he is finished for the season. "We'll see how he is over the summer before making any plans for him."
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