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Paul Nicholls given 'no option' but to retire former star chaser Topofthegame

Topofthegame: the 2019 RSA winner had not raced in three and a half years
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Topofthegame, the Paul Nicholls-trained chaser who looked to have the world at his feet when landing the 2019 RSA Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, has been retired after meeting with another setback.

The ten-year-old has missed the last two full jumps seasons through injury and has not been seen on a racecourse since April 2019, when he finished second to Lostintranslation in a Grade 1 at Aintree.

Nicholls said in his Betfair blog: "This time of year is always a bit tricky as problems occur once you start pressing a few buttons with the horses.

"With Topofthegame, the red light is flashing quite strongly after a new issue surfaced so we have no option but to call it a day with him as a racehorse."

Topofthegame fended off Santini and Delta Work to land a thrilling running of the RSA Chase (now the Brown Advisory Novices’ Chase) at Cheltenham over three and a half years ago under an inspired ride from Harry Cobden and looked as tough he would progress into a genuine Gold Cup contender.

However, a tendon injury ruled him out of the following season and he has been beset by a series of niggling injuries ever since.

Nicholls said last month the Grand National was a long-term aim for Topofthegame should his recovery stay on track.

Topofthegame, jointly owned by Chris Giles and Paul Barber, won three times and was also a close second in the 2018 Coral Cup and the same year's Kauto Star Novices' Chase at Kempton.


Topofthegame career details


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The red light is flashing quite strongly after a new issue surfaced so we have no option but to call it a day with him as a racehorse
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