Upbeat prognosis on Barters Hill

Trainer Ben Pauling has delivered an upbeat prognosis on Barters Hill, confirming the Bay Gelding does not need to undergo surgery.

The six-year-old suffered a tendon injury during his chase debut at Cheltenham earlier this month and it was initially feared the horse would have to undergo an operation to correct the problem.

However, Pauling has now confirmed the issue has corrected itself, meaning the Circle Of Friends owned horse will no longer have to go under the knife.

“We’re thrilled. The operation was going to be carried out to allow the tendon to come completely off the hock rather than be half on and half off,” Pauling said. “Over the last four or five days it looked like that had happened naturally and it has been confirmed by the vet.”

Pauling has stopped short of confirming whether Barters Hill will be able to return to competitive race action in the future, admitting they will not know if there is any lasting damage until he makes a more substantial recovery.

He added: “It’s a much better position to be in than we were. It doesn’t mean we are out of the woods, we won’t know if he will come back as a racehorse until we get him back next season and see what power he retains but it’s a much better prognosis than it was.”

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