Monday 21 August 2017

Return to chasing not on cards for Big Buck's

J A McGrath

There will be no return to chasing for the prolific Big Buck's in the wake of Saturday's Long Distance Hurdle win at Newbury, according to his owner.

Big Buck's was at his professional best when sent off a 1/8 favourite and Andy Stewart believes the eight-year-old is set to complete his usual programme. Next up is the Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot, then the World Hurdle at Cheltenham and then Aintree.

"There's no point in switching him back to fences now," Stewart remarked. "He's more mature now. He no longer seems to hit these flat spots in his races and he doesn't really need a lead, nor does he pull himself up when he gets to the front.

"Those closest to him say he's looking and feeling as well as he ever has, so we're looking forward to the months ahead.

"It was nice to equal Bula's record (13 consecutive wins), but we're not into chasing records. If they happen, they happen.

"Also, we were well aware that it was the third anniversary of Big Buck's unshipping Sam (Thomas) in the Hennessy and Paul's (Nicholls) decision to switch the horse to hurdles.

"Lots of people have said to me why don't we switch him back to fences, but the fact is he is so good at what he's doing."

The Stewart family colours will be carried by Tataniano in the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown on Saturday as Nicholls' stable aims to win it for the seventh consecutive year. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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