Noel Meade said it is "heartbreaking" that injury has ruled out smart novice hurdler Ned Buntline for the rest of the season.
The County Meath trainer spoke about the five-year-old in glowing terms after his impressive display in a Naas bumper in early November and he has made a fine start to his career over obstacles, with a Leopardstown win sandwiched by two sound placed efforts.
He was third behind Mozoltov and Don Cossack in last weekend's Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle at Punchestown, after which the season-ending injury was discovered.
Meade said: "He pulled up lame after he ran at Punchestown the other day and it transpired he had a tiny crack at the tip of his splint bone.
"It's not career threatening or anything like that, but it is heartbreaking as we were really looking forward to seeing him run in the big novice races this spring.
"Unfortunately time is against us as, by the time we get him right, the season will be nearly over, so we'll look forward to next season with him now.
"He's a big horse, well over 17 hands, so a bit of time isn't going to do him any harm anyway.
"Whether he'll stay over hurdles or jump a fence next season, I wouldn't have a clue at this stage. We'll think about that when the time comes."
9 March 2014Fall leaves Cooper 'badly winded'
National glee for supersub Mullins
Cooper warms up with double
Cooper warms up with double
Francome fancies New One revenge
Quinn targets another Triumph
Buck's primed for World title bid
Cheltenham team monitor ground
Fenton delays Instalment call
Activial to duck Festival mission
Hope springs eternal for Encore
Avenue roads lead to Irish Oaks
Fab Fly takes on eight in Champion
Dude's the main man
Top trainers reject watering
Hinterland takes Champion test
Baltimore sets up bonus bid
Warrior wins Trial battle
Fallon hits Meydan heights
Chartreux bounces back to best
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Soumillon strikes on super Shea
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8 March 2014Queally hits Sandown target
Briar tops Bartlett contenders
Calipto leads Triumph hopefuls
Ginge fires burn brightly for Neild
Creek forced out of Gold Cup
Milan targeting Final glory
McCoy to miss Sunday and Monday
Exchange rate pays dividend
Temps doubtful for Festival
Conor settles in at Cheltenham
De Bromhead sweet on Special
Epsom to honour St Nick
Mullins dominates JLT entries
Al and Dynaste top Ryanair field
Big two lead World possibles
7 March 2014Lockinge target for Tonto
All set for a super Saturday
Silver aiming to shine
Imperial only thought for Honeyball
Distance fears for Highland
Montiridge preps for Dubai trip
Ayr gets go-ahead
Ayr delay inspection decision
Benbulben misses Cheltenham
Card 'gut wrencher' for Tizzard
Guard stands tall for new record
Faugheen looms over Neptune field
Ballycasey stands firm in RSA
Sire spearheads Queen Mother list
Australia still in Derby shake-up
Henderson perfectly happy with Tent
Regal leads the way in Imperial
6 March 2014McNamara in 'excellent spirits'
Codd snapped up for Sea
Farm National bid in the balance
Byron all set for Aussie challenge
Ayr takes precautions
Bridgwater salutes unsung hero
Murtagh watches on at Lingfield
Mullins retains Fly supporting cast
Bittar welcomes bill amendments
Fenton cleared for Festival runners
Trip concerns sway McCoy to Fishers
Regal vies for Imperial rule
Mullins quintet in Supreme mix
Arkle has Champagne sparkle
Rizeena given dual Guineas options