Binocular back in Champion picture

Updated: February 20, 2012

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Binocular put himself back in the Champion Hurdle picture on Saturday when he landed the Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton.

The JP McManus owned horse won the Cheltenham race in 2010 but missed last year due to medication issues. He showed that he still retains his ability with an easy victory this weekend. Bookmakers were impressed and were quick to shorten the eight-year-old for the Champion Hurdle.

Boylesports now go 7/1 about the former champion regaining his crown. However, he still has some way to go before he can beat Hurricane Fly and connections are aware of this.

“He did it well in the end,” said McCoy. “I was always wanting to make it a race to give him a good blow as he’s a bit of a stuffy horse. I wanted to make sure this race put him spot-on for Cheltenham.”

McCoy still thinks reigning champion Hurricane Fly will be hard to beat:

He added: “He responded well, but he still has plenty of ground to find with the likes of Hurricane Fly.”

Celestial Halo, who finished in front of Binocular in the 2009 Champion Hurdle, held on for second with Starluck in third.

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