Latest Exhibition, who was runner-up in the Albert Bartlett at last year’s Cheltenham Festival, looks likely to bypass this years event to run at Fairyhouse instead.
Paul Nolan’s stable star was beaten just a neck by Monkfish 12 months ago, but the Willie Mullins-trained gelding has been a very difficult horse to beat in Grade One novice chases at Leopardstown in his last couple of outings there.
Having the option of taking on Monkfish for a fourth time in the Brown Advisory Novices’ Chase at Cheltenham, the 8 year old holds alternative engagements in the shorter Marsh Novices’ Chase and the longer National Hunt Chase.
Paul Nolan, however, is currently in favour of keeping Latest Exhibition at home.
He said: “That would be the thinking at the minute (missing Cheltenham).
“He’ll have an entry in the Irish Grand National and an entry in the Ryanair Gold Cup in Fairyhouse.
“Things can happen and things can change, but unless something changes, that’s the plan – to go for one of the races at Fairyhouse.”
With the absence of Latest Exhibition, Nolan’s sole Cheltenham raider is likely to be Mrs Milner in the Pertemps Final.
The daughter of Flemensfirth was narrowly beaten in the Cotswolds earlier in the season, since when she has finished fourth in a Pertemps qualifier at Leopardstown before falling in a mares’ handicap hurdle at the same venue last month.
“We’ll probably bring Mrs Milner for the Pertemps and that’s it,” Nolan added.
“She’s been fine since her fall. For a slight mare, she’s very tough and got over her fall very quickly – she’s certainly tough and so brave.
“We ran over a shorter trip the last day to keep her against her own sex, but I think she’s better over a trip.
“With just the one horse running I probably won’t travel myself, what with all the restrictions and everything.”