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Sunday, 18 November, 2018

Nichols Canyon misses US date due to injuries en route to Nashville

Nichols Canyon, on the way to victory under Ruby Walsh in the Stayers' Hurdle at Cheltenham, will head to Tennessee for the Iroquois Hurdle
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Willie Mullins has described as "extremely frustrating" having to withdraw Nichols Canyon from the Grade 1 Calvin Houghland Iroquois Hurdle at Percy Warner Park in Nashville on Saturday because of injuries he suffered en route to the US.

Nichols Canyon was favourite for the $200,000 contest and was eligible for a $500,000 bonus having won the Stayers' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival in March.

Mullins reported on Tuesday: "Nichols Canyon was injured in transit to the US. We don't think there are any fractures involved and it is probably muscle injuries he suffered. We'll wait until he gets home and we'll know more then.

"It's extremely frustrating for everyone involved to miss out in these circumstances as it's very seldom that a jumps horse gets a chance to run for that amount of money. You could say it was two years in the planning.

"We took Nichols Canyon there last year, when he ran third in the race, and we were all set for Saturday. It was the plan all along to go back and try to win the race and the bonus."

Mullins added a decision on Annie Power's immediate future has still to be reached, saying: "The owners and myself haven't finalised things yet."

Annie Power, winner of the 2016 Champion Hurdle, has not run since landing the Aintree Hurdle in April of last year and is in foal to Camelot.

It's extremely frustrating for everyone involved to miss out in these circumstances
E.W. Terms
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