Paul Nicholls has confirmed that recent Betway Bowl successor Clan Des Obeaux will bypass this weekend’s Sandown meeting in favour of a trip across the Irish Sea to Punchestown.
The Ditcheat handler confirmed on his Twitter that connections of the two-time King George victor will supplement their charge for a tilt at next week’s Punchestown Gold Cup as opposed to Saturday’s bet365 Gold Cup in Esher.
Having finished second at Down Royal in 2019, the recent Merseyside victor will now head for a battle with the Irish elite who dominated the Cheltenham renewal last month.
Henry de Bromhead’s stable-duo Minella Indo and A Plus Tard were followed home by duel-winner Al Boum Photo in a clean sweep for Ireland at Prestbury Park, with Nicholls bypassing the blue riband event as a result of two previous underwhelming performances from his representative in Gloucestershire.
Instead, his yard star headed to the north-west in a decision that proved a masterstroke as Harry Cobden’s mount ran out a convincing 26-length success from Clondaw Castle.
Cobden, who rode Clan Des Obeaux to victory in Liverpool earlier this month, will not take the place in the hot-seat in Country Kildare after it was confirmed he would miss the rest of the season through injury.