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Cheltenham - Racing: Gabynako added to Arkle challengers

Gavin Cromwell has elected to add a new contender to the Arkle picture as Gabynako has been supplemented for Tuesday's Grade 1 novice chase at the Cheltenham Festival.

The seven-year-old went off just 9/2 for last season's Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle at the Festival, but was hampered by a faller and unseated his rider at the first obstacle.

Connections will be hoping to fare much better this time around and Gabynako has shown plenty of promise over fences and is 20/1 to win the Arkle.

Gabynako full of fences promise

He has won just once from four starts over fences, but on that occasion he beat subsequent Grade 1 winner Fury Road at Fairyhouse.

He also went close to his own top-level win in the Drinmore Novice Chase, only to make a mistake at the last and allow Beacon Edge to capitalise.

He most recently finished third at Limerick at Christmas in the Faugheen Novice Chase.

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Gabynako was the only addition to the Arkle field at Wednesday's forfeit stage, with 14 runners still in contention, including Edwardstone, Blue Lord and Riviere D'etel.

Cromwell rues Limerick choice

Cromwell said prior to the supplementary stage closing: "We're going to supplement him for the Arkle. It's going to be a good race, but it might be the lesser option of the three Grade 1 novice chases at Cheltenham this year.

"If he can travel in the first half of the race, I think he'll come home well. Keith Donoghue will ride him (for the first time).

"We said after Limerick that he'd go straight to Cheltenham. He had a very hard race in the Drinmore and that took its toll in the Faugheen Novice Chase.

"In hindsight, we probably shouldn't have gone to Limerick, but it's easy to be wise afterwards."

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