‘We’ve run out of time’ – Sir Alex Ferguson’s best horse forced to miss big race at Aintree | The Sun
PAUL NICHOLLS has confirmed Clan Des Obeaux will miss this year’s Aintree Bowl.
The 11-year-old – part-owned by former Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson – was set for a comeback in the race he’s won in the previous two runnings.
A shot at the hat trick looked on the cards after the five-time Grade One winner looked well in rehabilitation following an injury last April.
The former King George winner – who has amassed over £1million in prize money – has suffered a ‘minor’ setback and won’t now appear until next season.
He’s not been seen on a race track since his second place finish in last year’s Punchestown Gold Cup – a race won by Allaho.
Now, star chaser Bravemansgame has been tipped to step up in the Bowl for the Nicholls team and is the current joint-favourite to win.
But Nicholls admits there are options for his Cheltenham Gold Cup runner up – though he hopes to avoid a gruelling rematch with victor Galopin Des Champs.
He said: "Clan Des Obeaux won't make it to Aintree; we've just run out of time.
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"He's had a few warning lights flashing, so we're going to leave him until next season, and now everyone has jumped on the bandwagon of 'Bravemansgame is going to run now'.
“Bravemansgame has an option of that or Punchestown, either option is open to us.
"The most important thing is to make sure we're happy with him wherever he runs, if we do run him again this season. If we could avoid Galopin Des Champs, anyone would wisely do that, especially on his home turf.
“You'd want to avoid getting into another scrap with him until next March, so that'll come into our thinking, but we'll make the best decision for our horse if we're happy with him.
- Shishkin 5/2
- Bravemansgame 5/2
- Conflated 11/4
- Ahoy Senor 11/4
- A Plus Tard 4/1
- Capodanno 14/1
- Protektorat 16/1
- Envoi Allen 16/1
- Sounds Russian 20/1
- Eldorado Allen 33/1
"Age has caught up a little with Clan Des Obeaux and he's had this very minor injury. His suspensory boots have troubled us.
“We thought he'd get there and we were very happy with him, but by the end of the week we realised we weren't going to make it.
“It's frustrating as it's a minor injury, but it doesn't matter the extent, if we have a problem we have to be careful."
Nicholls has won the Aintree Bowl a record six times, including the past twice with Clan Des Obeaux.
Silviniaco Conti also won it twice, with What A Friend and See More Business adding to Nicholls’ haul in the past.
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