The first casualty of the 2009 Festival is Hurricane Fly, an early seriouc contender for the Supreme Novices, who was lame before the Deloitte Hurdle at Leopardstown earlier in the month. His trainer is unable to get him back to full fitness for the Cheltenham Festival Supreme Novices Hurdle and will hold him back for the Punchestown Festival.
This news will impact many supporters of the horse who would have held ante post bets at much bigger prices than the 4/1 he was when the news broke this afternoon. This leaves the other Willie Mullins contender for the race Cousin Vinny as as the clear favourite with the online bookmakers quickly cutting him to 7/2 favourite (William Hill), even after his last flight blunder which cost him victory in the Deloitte Hurdle.
Other contenders to lok out for are the second favourite, Torphichen at 7/1 from Boylesports, and Red Maloney at 12/1 from Coral.