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Thursday, 13 December, 2018

Cue Card still full of life says Bishop as Kempton is ruled out

Cue Card: star was last seen in November's Betfair Chase
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Hopes of Cue Card adding some stardust to Kempton's 32Red Lanzarote Handicap Hurdle fixture on Saturday by running in the Listed 2m4½f chase on the card have been dashed because he has pus in his foot.

But owner Jean Bishop says her star is still loving his racing and a battleplan will be mapped out with trainer Colin Tizzard this week.

Cue Card's connections hinted recently the Kempton contest could figure on the popular 12-year-old's agenda before a crack at next month's Betfair Ascot Chase, which the Tizzard-trained gelding won in 2013 and last year.

However, Bishop on Sunday ruled out a trip to the track where her pride and joy won the King George VI Chase in 2015.

She said: "There was talk, but he isn't running. I'm going down to Colin's on Wednesday and we'll have a chat about plans.

"I haven't had chance to sit down with Colin and talk about things, so I'll go down for a few days and we'll know more about what we're doing, but he's very well."

Tizzard, speaking at Plumpton on Sunday, added: "He's got pus in a foot and has had his shoe off for three days, so he won't be going to Kempton."

The trainer suggested last month that the nine-time Grade 1 winner would be retired at the end of the season, with the Ascot Chase, Ryanair Chase and a trip to Aintree among the options for his farewell tour.

A faller in the Charlie Hall Chase on his seasonal debut, he finished 57 lengths behind Bristol De Mai when bidding for his fourth Betfair Chase on his latest appearance at Haydock in November.

"People say about his age and he's still running, but you saw the horses running on Saturday [in the Welsh Grand National and Sandown's veterans' chase]," added Bishop, well aware of her star's following.

"Cue Card's still full of life and still enjoys his racing, so there's no reason he shouldn't be running.

"I know people have suggested I'm greedy with money, but that's not the case at all. He just enjoys his racing and while he's fit and well there's no reason he shouldn't be running.

"As to what our plans are, we haven't decided yet.

"I've had lots of people saying how much they think of him, people write to me and they've got the Cue Card bar at Haydock with pictures of him all over the wall. I know how popular he is. I don't read them, but I hear there are comments that he shouldn't be running and he's done enough. That's people's opinion, but the horse will definitely come first.

"Unless we thought he was well and good enough to take his place in a race we'd never run him."

You might also be interested in:

'We've run into a good one' – Cue Card is made to look his age by tearaway grey

Blow for Brennan as Cobden bags Cue Card ride for Betfair Chase

Talk of Cue Card retirement as Tizzard maps swansong tour for popular veteran


While he's fit and well there's no reason he shouldn't be running
E.W. Terms
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