The Cheltenham Gold Cup will no longer be a target for Clan Des Obeaux.
Trainer Paul Nicholls has ruled out the possibility of Clan Des Obeaux running in next year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup.
The brilliant chaser, who is part-owned by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, has failed to showcase his best form in two successive editions of the Cheltenham Festival showpiece, finishing well behind eventual winner Al Boum Photo (5/1 2021 Gold Cup Outright) on both occasions.
Clan Des Obeaux’ Cheltenham struggles are something of a surprise given his success elsewhere, most notably at Kempton’s Boxing Day highlight, the King George VI Chase, where he has been a winner in each of the last two editions and will be bidding to make it a hat-trick of triumphs later this year.
However, Nicholls has ruled out the possibility of Clan Des Obeaux returning for another crack at next year’s Gold Cup, admitting that the Prestbury Park course just does not suit his stable star.
“We are not going to go to the Gold Cup next year – we will stick to going right-handed,” Nicholls was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.
“We won’t even consider him as a Gold Cup horse next year. We can do better if we place him right. He obviously doesn’t like it around Cheltenham.
“Next season it will be Down Royal (for the Champion Chase in November), the King George, then Punchestown – and he might have something else in between Kempton and Punchestown.
“He loves Kempton, so (next season) we will concentrate on the King George. We will definitely stick to going right-handed.”