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Champion Hurdle hero Sublimity has final start; PUNCHESTOWN TONIGHT.

CONNECTIONS of 2007 Champion Hurdle hero Sublimity are confident of a big run from their 11-year-old as they call time on his career at Punchestown today, writes Jessica Lamb.

Bill Hennessy's pride and joy faces 12 rivals in his bid to record a tenth career success in the 2m conditions hurdle (7.40) and will be watched by his 30-strong fan club, who have promised to celebrate "win, lose or draw" at Hennessy's pub the Ardlea Inn, in Artane.

Philip Carberry, who has ridden Sublimity on 15 occasions and was aboard for his Champion Hurdle victory, will jet in from France this afternoon - ash cloud permitting - to ride.

Trainer Robbie Hennessy, Bill's son, yesterday confirmed this race had been set as Sublimity's swansong for several months and there had been no hiccups during his preparation.

He said: "This is an ideal opportunity on paper. He's been working well on the gallops and I'm very confident of a big run. It would be great to see him go out on a high. He deserves that and conditions will be spot-on."

Hennessy reported that a deterioration in Sublimity's breathing, which first became a problem in the 2009 Champion Hurdle, and his increasing age were the reasons for retirement.

"After he was unable to breathe in the Champion Hurdle, he had his palate cauterised by respiratory specialist Ben Brain, and he has returned every year since, but his breathing is no longer 100 per cent and it's better to call time when he can still win," said Hennessy.

"We are fitting a tongue-tie and cross noseband as that still does the trick, and we're all set for a good night."

Sublimity's retirement will not prevent him from continuing to be the regular work partner of Ryanair Chase third Rubi Light, who is set to assume star status at the Ratoath yard, and he will also be bound for the Racehorse to Riding Horse class at the Dublin Horse Show in August.

Hennessy added: "Majella Brennan, who has looked after Sublimity for almost as long as he has been alive, has always wanted a horse to do the class with and she's going to give it a go with him this year.

"He's become more relaxed in the last eight or nine months, so I would be hopeful that he now settles enough for the occasion." Card and spotlight, page 60

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Sublimity: will continue to partner Rubi Light in work
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:May 25, 2011
Words:408
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