Racing: Unsinkable Boxer is waterlogged

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The Independent Online
MARTIN PIPE'S Unsinkable Boxer is to make his chasing debut on Friday at Uttoxeter. The unbeaten nine-year-old was ready for his first appearance over fences today, but Newton Abbot's meeting was abandoned because the track was waterlogged.

Unsinkable Boxer won all five runs over hurdles last season after joining Pipe, culminating in big-race victories at the Cheltenham Festival and Aintree. The gelding is owned by Paul Green.

"It's unfortunate that Newton Abbot's off due to the rain but Unsinkable Boxer is now very likely to run over fences at Uttoxeter on Friday,'' Pipe said yesterday. "He's pleased me in all his schooling over fences at home and is now ready to run. He is a very exciting prospect as he jumps very well."

Unsinkable Boxer is 14-1 with William Hill and Ladbrokes for the Cheltenham Gold Cup next March, despite not yet having jumped a fence in public.

Pipe's Cyfor Malta, ruled out of Saturday's Tripleprint Gold Cup Chase because of a slight ``set-back'', has only a temporary ailment, the trainer said. "There are no plans for Cyfor Malta at present, because of the set- back, and we'll just give him some time. He'll tell me when he's ready to run, and that's when I'll be able to tell everybody else."

Plans also remain fluid for his stablemate Northern Starlight, who stayed on strongly to land the Tripleprint prize. Pipe said: "He did us proud by winning the way he did.''