Horse Racing - Henderson and Nicholls warn against Cheltenham watering

Top trainers Nicky Henderson and Paul Nicholls have urged Cheltenham officials not to water the track ahead of next week's Festival.

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HORSE RACING Nicky Henderson

Despite a winter of wet weather, clerk of the course Simon Claisse raised the prospect that the quick drying ground could need to be watered on the New course, which will be used for Thursday and Friday's racing.

"I hope they don't water, it would be a tragedy," Henderson told a racing forum at Sandown Park.

"You have got to let nature take its course. If nature says it's good ground, let them run on good ground and let the good-ground horses get a chance."

Nicholls revealed he'd spoken to Claisse, who slightly tweaked his description of the going to good to soft on Saturday.

"I know he is worried it might dry up," he said.

"His concern is the track might get quicker by Thursday and Friday and whether he should water this weekend to make sure it doesn't. It's a gamble to take and it has been so wet."

Meanwhile, Nicholls has confirmed Hinterland will not race with novice company in next Tuesday's Arkle Chase but tackle all-comers in the wide-open BetVictor Queen Mother Champion Chase, in which he is a best-priced 12-1 shot.

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