Followers of @CheltenhamNews have overwhelming voted in favour of Faugheen winning the Champion Hurdle in March, despite his shock defeat on Sunday. The previously unbeaten Willie Mullins trained hurdler was unable to pick up Nichols Canyon in the Morgiana Hurdle but our Social Media followers have been quick to throw their support behind the dual Cheltenham Festival winner
Following the Morgiana Hurdle on Sunday we asked our followers a simple question; Will Faugheen win the Champion Hurdle in March?
As always with our brilliant followers, we got a brilliant response with well over 1200 votes cast and it was a landslide as 79% of you voted Yes. The majority of comments suggested that this was a mere blip from the Machine who had previously looked invincible during his career.
The bookmakers reacted to that defeat with Faugheen now a best price 15/8 to retain his Champion Hurdle crown, which hasn't been done since Hardy Eustace backed up his 2004 win in 2005. Some great hurdlers like Hurricane Fly and tried and failed to win the Champion Hurdle in successive years but the majority still believe that Faugheen can add his name to that list.
Following on from his defeat, Willie Mullins has stated that Faugheen is now likely to go to Kempton on Boxing Day for the Christmas Hurdle, while stable-mate and Morgiana winner Nichols Canyon is likely to go Punchestown for he Ryanair Hurdle with the pair of them now likely to be kept apart until the Festival.