sport

Saviour ruled out of Newbury

Dan Skelton has been forced to rule his stable star Willow's Saviour out of next Saturday's Betfair Hurdle at Newbury.

The seven-year-old has improved in leaps and bounds since joining Skelton this season, winning his last three races at Ascot, Musselburgh and back at Ascot when waltzing away with The Ladbroke.

While the injury is reportedly nothing serious, Skelton feels he would not be at his best next week and he will head straight to the Cheltenham Festival.

"Willow's Saviour will not be taking his chance in next Saturday's big handicap after pulling a muscle in training," said Skelton on his website, www.danskeltonracing.com.

"It's nothing to worry about long term and he'll be back on the gallops in no time but going to a race like that, on ground that's highly likely to be very testing is simply not an option when you've any chinks in your armour.

"His next race will be the Sky Bet Supreme at the Festival on March 11."