African Gold sidelined
Nigel Twiston-Davies' African Gold has been ruled out for the season after pulling up lame at Warwick on Saturday.
The six-year-old finished second to At Fishers Cross in the Albert Bartlett at Cheltenham last season and was expected to take high order in the novice chasing ranks this term.
However, he was switched back to hurdles after putting in a lacklustre effort on his fencing bow at Cheltenham and falling when dropped in class for a confidence-booster at Uttoxeter.
African Gold contested a Pertemps Hurdle qualifier at Warwick last weekend but was pulled up before the last.
Part-owner Dai Walters said: "The ground has been that bad this season we've had a few go wrong lately and that was the case with African Gold.
"It was particularly bad down the back straight at Warwick and he twisted himself or something and Sam (Twiston-Davies) pulled him up.
"He's out for the season.
"Thankfully, he's got plenty of time on his side."
One of Walters' string who has enjoyed better fortune this season is Nicky Henderson's Oscar Whisky and he remains on target for the Betfred TV Scilly Isles Novices' Chase at Sandown on February 1.
"Hopefully the ground will be a bit better by then," said Walters.
"It wants to be, there's only eight weeks until Cheltenham."