Tidal Bay will head straight to next month's Cheltenham Festival after trainer Paul Nicholls scratched him from the Hennessy Gold Cup at Leopardstown on Saturday.
The rejuvenated 12-year-old, a last-gasp winner of the Lexus Chase over the course and distance over Christmas, had to miss the Argento Chase at Cheltenham last month after suffering a slight setback.
Nicholls had hoped his veteran would be ready to return to Ireland next weekend, but the trainer is now concentrating on preparing Graham Wylie's highly talented but quirky performer for either the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup or the Ladbrokes World Hurdle.
"I have scratched Tidal Bay from the Irish Hennessy next Saturday, as he won't be ready in time," Nicholls told www.betfair.com.
"He missed the Argento as he was slightly lame. He is fine now, but I am not going to rush him.
"He will go straight to the Festival, and we will make a decision on what race he contests there nearer the time, when we have a better idea on the ground."
Nicholls does plan, however, to have a strong hand at Newbury's important meeting on Saturday, when the team will include Unioniste, who has not run since winning the Paul Stewart IronSpine Charity Challenge Gold Cup at Cheltenham in mid-December.
"I have spoken to John Hales (owner) this morning, and we plan to run Unioniste in the three-mile novice chase on the Betfair Super Saturday card at Newbury on February 9," said Nicholls.
"We won the race with Denman - who is due to parade next Saturday - before his win in the Sun Alliance in 2007 and this will tell us more about what Festival route to go down with Unioniste.
"Silviniaco Conti is on schedule to run in the Denman Chase and I will also be confirming three for the Betfair Hurdle - Pearl Swan, Dark Lover and Caid Du Berlais."
1 October 2014Tapestry enters Arc picture
Dettori vies for World rule in Arc
Toocool has American dream
Berkshire on the comeback trail
Dettori given Ruler role
Estidhkaar 'on target' for Dewhurst
Australia leads Champions acceptors
Martin outlines Jack ground hopes
Raiding party heads Opera runners
Autumn aim for North
Shamkala sole Arc withdrawal
Force and Power top Abbaye list
Cadeaux team mull Caulfield date
Limato set for Redcar speed test
Cape set for Concorde test
Telescope sights set on Breeders'
Power primed to storm Abbaye
Creepy excels on chasing bow
Al Kazeem given Arc go-ahead
Buick makes Ivanhowe Arc link
Martin keen on Clonard
Cirrus heads Longchamp billing
Elite aim for Irving
Ribbons run hinges on Paris ground
Quick on course for Ces date
30 September 2014Power heads Abbaye market
No fitness worries for Lemaire
Beaux plans undecided
Foret-bound Byron enjoys workout
Perfect fencing start for Minstrel
Ted takes Roscommon honours
Rain fillip for Treve Arc challenge
Speed not an issue to River camp
Signal on course to Wow in Paris
Ivawood heads Millions field
Top fillies star in Chariot race
Point primed for Abbaye assignment
29 September 2014Logic ruled out for the season
Ansgar in Foret frame
Kalann team consider Champions bid
Peslier and Mosse hunt Arc mounts
O'Brien trio set for Longchamp
High hopes for Elliott team
Berry takes the rails route
River cruises to Beresford glory
Qualify swoops for O'Brien team
Minstrel ready for chasing bow
Tiggy Abbaye run not set in stone
Angel camp ponder Darley raid
Pineau ripe for new season
Mubtaghaa suited by joy of six
Fiesolana fired up for Foret
28 September 2014Keighley holds Court for Cheltenham
Mart makes Newland's day
Spin does the trick at Ripon
Angel heaven-sent for Tregoning
Tiggy takes Cheveley gold
Lodge proves a stroll in Park
Rosalie blossoms for hat-trick
Naylor seeking Paris prize
Integral on course for Chariot
Dettori anticipating 'vintage' Arc