Medermit (nearside) winning the Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter last seasonPICTURE: Getty Images
Medermit return delayed by training setback
MEDERMIT, winner of the Haldon Gold Cup on his first start last season, will be back in action later than intended this time around after suffering a setback in training.
Both the Old Roan Chase at Aintree on October 27 or the Betfair Chase in November, had been mentioned as options for the eight-year-old, but trainer Alan King has ruled him out of those races.
"It's a shame, but Medermit will certainly be out for the first half of this season and we will review the situation again on the run up to Christmas," King said.
The winner of more than £300,000, Medermit proved a stalwart for King last winter, enduring two enthralling scraps with Riverside Theatre at Ascot and again in the Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
King also said he was "happy enough" with the British debut of Handazan, who was well beaten into second by the Paul Nicholls-trained Far West at Chepstow on Sunday.
The trainer told his website: "Handazan was probably beaten by a good novice, but he will be a lot sharper for the experience, and I would think that there is plenty of improvement to come. He just needed that match practice."