Blazing Khal looks set for a run in the Albert Bartlett at next year’s Cheltenham Festival
Blazing Khal looks set for a run in the Albert Bartlett at next year’s Cheltenham Festival

Following his victory at Cheltenham in the November meeting, trainer Charles Byrnes has confirmed he is targeting the Albert Bartlett at the Festival in March for Blazing Khal.

After an early promising win at Limerick at the end of 2020, Blazing Khal was back in action in October and took a Galway maiden before heading to Cheltenham for a crack at the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle on November 12.

The five-year-old handled the step up superbly, winning the Grade Two contest by two-and-a-half lengths from Gelino Bello, and now Byrnes is assessing his options for the winter with the ultimate goal being the Albert Bartlett at the Cheltenham Festival in the spring.

All roads point to the Cheltenham Festival in March for Blazing Khal
All roads point to the Cheltenham Festival in March for Blazing Khal

The trainer admits it was pleasing to see Blazing Khal perform strongly at Cheltenham and admits it bodes well for the National Hunt showpiece meeting in March.

He said: "It's a big plus now we know he handles the track and has some form there. He's come home in good form, I haven't really made any plans for him yet but the goal is the Albert Bartlett back at Cheltenham in March."

Byrnes says a trip to Naas early in 2022 could be an option before Cheltenham, while February's Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown may also provide his charge with an outing in preparation for his return to Prestbury Park.

He added on Sky Sports Racing: "There's not an awful lot for him in the meantime, there's not a lot for him at Christmas. 

"I think there's a Grade One at Naas just after the New Year and there's the Dublin Racing Festival. At the moment, I haven't made any plans for him."

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