Leading Arkle Trophy contender Dynamite Dollars has been ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering a setback.
The Paul Nicholls-trained six-year-old was a best priced 7-1 for the two-mile Grade One contest on the opening day of next month’s Cheltenham Festival, having won four of his first five starts over fences.
An impressive chasing debut at Market Rasen was followed by a defeat at the hands of Kayley Woollacott’s Lalor at Cheltenham – since which he has landed the Henry VIII Novices’ Chase at Sandown, the Wayward Lad at Kempton and the Lightning Novices’ Chase at Doncaster.
Nicholls told Betfair: “Unfortunately Dynamite Dollars has had a minor setback in training, which will prevent him running again this season.
“He has taken to fences so well that we had high hopes of him in the Arkle.
“It is something that happens when you have a big team of horses, and hopefully Dynamite Dollars will be back next season.”
Nicholls is hoping Dynamite Dollars will return and fulfil his potential, in time.
He added: “You have to try to look on the bright side in these situations. I remember the nightmare when (future Gold Cup winner) Kauto Star was forced to miss the Arkle after sustaining a hairline fracture.
“I told his owner Clive Smith he might actually benefit from the time off to mature – and that certainly proved to be the case.
“Hopefully it will be the same with Dynamite Dollars, who is an exciting prospect with plenty more to offer.”