Henry de Bromhead has raised the possibility of switching back to the Mares’ Hurdle with Honeysuckle following her first career defeat at Fairyhouse last weekend.
The eight-year-old defeated Benie Des Dieux in the Mares’ Hurdle in 2020 and has since returned to Cheltenham to beat the boys in successive renewals of the Champion Hurdle.
But after losing her unbeaten record when bidding for a record fourth Hatton’s Grace on her reappearance, finishing third behind Teahupoo and Klassical Dream, De Bromhead is considering taking the easier option at the Festival in March.
However, plans are likely to become clearer after she bids for a fourth Irish Champion Hurdle success at Leopardstown in February.
De Bromhead told Racing TV: “She’s great, not a bother on her. She seems really well and ran really well we felt.
“You just wonder whether two-and-a-half on that heavy ground against that level of horse [caught her out]. They’re mid-160s horses and as it got softer, I felt Teahupoo was coming more and more into the race after what he did in Gowran in the Red Mills Hurdle, and Klassical Dream is a very good horse.
“I thought between the second-last and the last she had it put to bed and I just wonder did she get found out stamina-wise on the softer ground, but who knows?
“She’s brilliant and owes us nothing. We’re in bonus territory – it’s incredible what she’s done. We’ve had a lot of fun with her and I don’t think it’s finished yet.”
He added: “We can look at the Mares’ Hurdle, that’s always another option. It would be very much in my mind. My job is to try to find the race I think she can win.
“If connections want to do something else I’ll wholeheartedly do that as well, so we’ll see. That’s all a long way away and everybody has to get there.
“Let’s see how we go in the Irish Champion Hurdle.”