Haydock the target for Ribble Valley

Ribble Valley will next be aimed at a run in the Unibet Champion Hurdle Trial at Haydock, according to trainer Nicky Richards.

Having finished third in the Grade One Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle in November, the eight-year-old is now building towards the two-mile Grade Two prize on January 23 at Haydock.

Greystoke handler Richards has been pleased with Ribble Valley’s work behind the scenes and feels the lightly-raced runner can improve on his efforts at Newcastle later this month.

“The plan at the moment is to run Ribble Valley in the Champion Hurdle Trial at Haydock,” Richards said. “He is working away well and he seems fine, so hopefully we get a good run with the weather.

“He just needs to be a bit more streetwise, because when he has won he has gone round on the bridle.

“He didn’t disgrace himself at Newcastle, and hopefully there is a graded race over hurdles in him over the next couple of months.”

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