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McCoy offered Intersky ride at Kempton.

Byline: David Carr

TONY McCOY has been offered the chance to get back on Champion Hurdle third Intersky Falcon on Saturday - but Rooster Booster will not be making his reappearance this weekend, writes David Carr.

McCoy last rode the Jonjo O'Neill-trained gelding in his novice season in 2001/02, since when the seven-year-old - set to run in the RHT 40th Anniversary Hurdle at Kempton at the weekend - has developed into a top-notch performer under the now-retired Liam Cooper.

Part-owner Terry McDermott said yesterday: 'I have now spoken to Jonjo and it depends on where AP is riding on Saturday. If he is at Kempton, he will ride Intersky Falcon - we would be proud to have him on our horse.

'Intersky Falcon is in great shape and is definitely going to Kempton. He had a problem with his wind last season but still managed to finish third in the Champion Hurdle - he has had a wind operation and if that has worked then he is going to do us proud again this season.'

Philip Hobbs, trainer of Rooster Booster, yesterday ruled out the former Champion Hurdle winner.

'He worked this morning but blew a bit afterwards,' said Hobbs. 'I've had a word with his owner, Terry Warner, and he won't run at Kempton.

'Our options now are the valuable two-mile handicap hurdle at the Paddy Power meeting, the Fighting Fifth, or the Bula.

'At the moment, I am favouring the handicap hurdle at Cheltenham next month, as although he'll have top-weight they will go a good gallop and that will suit him.'

Trouble At Bay, a five-time winner last season but not seen out since finishing tenth when favourite for the Triumph Hurdle, is among the Kempton entries, but trainer Alan King is loath to overface the gelding in a race which is also set to feature the return to action of high-class performer Rigmarole.

'We put him in to have a look and I wouldn't mind taking on one of the big guns, but not three or four,' said King. 'He might go for the Silver Trophy at Chepstow the following week - he is rated 148 - but I am a bit limited with my options. He is in great form and I'm very pleased with him.'
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Oct 20, 2004
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