Finian's Rainbow is to swerve the William Hill King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day because of the soft ground.
Nicky Henderson will be represented by Long Run and Riverside Theatre in the Grade One showpiece, with the Queen Mother Champion Chase hero giving it a miss.
"After long deliberations and long thoughts I think Finian's Rainbow is going to stay at home," Henderson told At The Races from Ascot.
"He told us here at the last meeting that ground wasn't his type and I always thought that was the case with him. It's sad because when he won at Aintree last year we felt the King George was his sort of race.
"We were dying to up him to three miles and still will, just not in this ground. I've spoken to Barney (Clifford, clerk of the course at Kempton) this morning and to Michael Buckley (owner).
"It's not going to tell us anything except probably disappoint us and put us back into a quandary. Therefore the team is from three to two - Long Run and Riverside Theatre will both run."
David Bridgwater could turn to Tony McCoy for his King George hope The Giant Bolster.
Runner-up in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, the seven-year-old made a satisfactory return to action when third to Silviniaco Conti in the Betfair Chase at Haydock last month.
He was ridden on Merseyside by Tom Scudamore, who has been on board for eight of the gelding's last nine starts, but the jockey would be required to ride Grands Crus for David Pipe should he take his chance.
Bridgwater said: "He's Tom's ride, but if Grands Crus runs he has to ride that, end of story. It's all up in the air, but I've been talking to (agent) Dave Roberts over the possibility of AP McCoy being free."
13 May 2013Fabre confirms Ocovango for Epsom
Aspect on route to big things
Room at the top for Cityscape
Freedom steps into chasing ranks
Lucky thirteen in line for Lockinge
Galway beckons for Swinton hero
Sajjhaa set for late return
Cadeaux thriving in Singapore
Pink primed for Duke Of York
Liber takes aim at Musidora
Battle won for O'Brien
Pretending the real deal
Duntle back to winning ways
Classic glory for Flotilla
Style wins the day in Paris
Highclere double-handed for Dante
Cornerstone plans up in the air
Beckett planning Gesture workout
12 May 2013No hurry for Jammy plans
Guest in hunt for more Ascot glory
Vow set for Goodwood return
Gold-en boy Anodin in Classic hunt
Buick aiming for French strike
Angel flies home to land Chartwell
Barizan bounces back in style
Queally lights up Ascot meeting
Ektihaam storms to Buckhounds win
Nevis takes depleted Trial contest
Hard-fought battle won at Haydock
Secret impresses in Oaks Trial
Ascot drama for Fanning
11 May 2013Felix foot-perfect on fencing debut
Cavalryman leads Cup charge
Ramsa ready to stand Trial
Duntle out to dazzle in Amethyst
Swift return doesn't bother Moran
Garman gives Bolger hope
Henderson: Ground vital for Voice
McMahon sweet on Tart Ascot claims
Murphy to move to France
Athos flies to Ormonde glory
Dee day for impressive Magician
Kingdom confirmed for Queen Anne
Secret's out for Lingfield glory
Lambe expects good run from Hall
Marengo ready to do battle
Greatwood on trial at Lingfield
Barizan sneaks into Swinton
Jamesie gunning for Vic-tory
10 May 2013Telescope focus is on Dante
Blinkers considered for Guarantee#
Bonfire camp bemoan Huxley flop
Moohaajim has six appeal
Ascot welcomes a couple of Guests