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."
3 August 2015Pearl shines at Nottingham
Bright new Dawn at Naas
Casey hoping for swift resumption
Undrafted set to swerve Haydock
'Awesome' Acapulco primed for York
Tropics set for Breeders' Cup trip
Winters ponders next Rebel move
Sails set for Newbury
Hot aiming to burn off rivals
No return date set for Spring
Ground key to Belardo targets
No hurry for Pharoah target
Phenomenal Pharoah does it again
Longford edges Galway thriller
Impact too strong at Chester
Fitz foiled on comeback
Baraweez in Galway repeat
McCullagh 'on the mend'
Amazing summer continues for Maria
Intilaaq camp on weather watch
Basem to step up in grade
Mini-break good for Horn - Gosden
Hobbs considered for Newbury trial
2 August 2015Dream week continues for Martin
Panama has American dream
Cyclone could stick to hurdling
Now Or Never excites O'Callaghan
Ervedya tackles Rothschild test
Mullins dominates Galway feature
Harty looking forward to a good Day
'Overwhelmed' Hughes bows out
Legatissimo stamps class on Nassau
Magical Dettori top gun at Goodwood
Dart hits Goodwood bullseye
Fantastic Frankie takes right Steps
Latharnach could drop back in trip
McNamara eager for training career
1 August 2015Rebel returns at Galway
No fairytale ending for Hughes
Stewards' glory for Magical Dettori
Legatissimo proves Nassau queen
Times targets Stewards' consolation
Hughes reflects on a golden career
Warrior books Ebor ticket
Muthmir makes amends
Hughes at his best on Bay
Mile proves golden for Beloved
Malabar stamps her class
Dettori guides Dubday to landmark
Charlton so Close to historic win
Diamonds ready to sparkle in Nassau
31 July 2015Pacy Muthmir rules in King George
Breizh bids for Galway glory
Pharoah Phan Phestival good to go
Jack's the lad in Galway Hurdle
Gosden salutes 'magical' Sir Peter
Laviniad gets up late in Corrib
Simple for Beckett and Bentley
Orange pips Goodwood rivals
Shalaa dazzles in Richmond
Relief for Hughes as Gibeon strikes
Cover up for Goodwood defence