Racing / Cheltenham Festival: Coulton dope fears dismissed

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THE connections of Coulton yesterday dismissed suspicions that the horse may have been doped before his disappointing eclipse in the Champion Hurdle. The Mick Easterby-trained gelding drifted in the betting from 5- 1 to 9-1 and trailed in 13th behind Granville Again. A spokesman for Easterby said: 'We were disappointed but it never entered our thoughts that he might have been doped. He didn't come back distressed.'