Paisley Park will “probably” have an entry for the Dornan Engineering Relkeel Hurdle at Chetlenham on New Year’s Day, but Emma Lavelle favours waiting for the Cleeve Hurdle later in the month.
The leading staying hurdler was due to run at Ascot on Saturday in defence of his Marsh Hurdle crown.
However, the meeting needed to survive two inspections before getting the go ahead and Lavelle felt the ground was too soft for her stable star.
“It was frustrating because it makes things a bit more complicated,” said Lavelle.
“We will probably make an entry for the Relkeel, but my overriding feeling is we will head straight for the Cleeve.
“The Relkeel is only two and a half miles and he’s a proper three-miler, despite him not being a slow horse. There are so many targets at the end of the season I’m not too concerned about not running, but I definitely want to run in the Cleeve.
“He was ready to run, but it’s not the end of the world. For them to not say it was on until 11.30am tells you how bad the ground was and I’m very happy with the decision we made.
“It was a Grade One and you want to be running in the best races, but you also want the horse to have a long career so it wasn’t going to happen.”