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Unbeaten hurdler On The Blind Side to miss Cheltenham Festival

On The Blind Side: ruled out of Cheltenham
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Britain's leading Ballymore Novices' Hurdle hope On The Blind Side will miss the Cheltenham Festival, Nicky Henderson revealed on Saturday.

Speaking at a preview night at Sandown racecourse, Henderson said: "On The Blind Side is not going to Cheltenham for the Ballymore. He is staying at home but I hope he will run again this season."

On The Blind Side joined Henderson a year ago after he was bought for £205,000 for owner Alan Spence after winning a point-to-point in Ireland.

Mike Spence, son of owner Alan tweeted: "Disappointing day. On The Blind Side misses Cheltenham. A small muscle issue means Cheltenham comes too soon this year. Hopefully Aintree is still on the cards but whatever happens he will be a better horse over fences and he's got a massive future ahead of him."

On The Blind Side won a maiden hurdle at Aintree on his stable debut in October and built on that performance with successive Grade 2 victories, the latest at Sandown in impressive fashion.

He had been a top price of 6-1 in a market headed by the highly touted Irish star Samcro, who was shortened to 4-6 from 8-11 by Paddy Power.

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A small muscle issue means Cheltenham comes too soon this year
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