Connections of Presenting Percy hinted on Sunday that a supplementary entry for the 32Red King George VI Chase was not out of the question if conditions looked like being more suitable in Britain than in Ireland.
Owner Philip Reynolds and trainer Pat Kelly are aiming the Gold Cup favourite firmly at the Savills Chase at Leopardstown on December 28 – but Kempton’s feature two days earlier might yet prove an option if the ground was unsuitably quick in Ireland.
Winner of the RSA Chase at Cheltenham in March, Presenting Percy was to have started the campaign in the John Durkan Memorial Chase at Punchestown, but with the going still predominately good, that plan was scrapped.
“He’s in great form. It’s sad he wasn’t here. My stomach was in bits all week waiting for today and I’m going to have to go through it all again in December,” Reynolds told At The Races.
“He’s in terrific form. Pat just felt the ground wasn’t soft enough. He’s been back in since the beginning of August. We thought we might get a run into him early November time, then we thought we were going to Punchestown.
“Leopardstown is only a couple of weeks away, if Pat wasn’t happy I wasn’t going to push his hand, so we will just have to wait until the 28th. I’m not sure whether Leopardstown will be any worse than Punchestown. The ground at Leopardstown at Christmas can be pretty good.
“We’re running out of time, we’re running out of places, so unless we supplement him for the King George…the ground is softer over there, as we saw on Saturday (at Sandown). The lads down at the start got an awful pelting out in the rain.”
Asked if Kempton was a serious consideration, Reynolds added: “We’ve got to get him out. We didn’t take a chance today, so we’re not going to take one in Leopardstown if the ground is every bit as good. All options – we’ll have to consider everything.”