Last Instalment, en route to winning that Fort Leney Novice Steeplechase at Leopardstown last Christmas. ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan
Bad Blow

Injury derails Last Instalment's Cheltenham challenge

The dual Grade 1 winner has been ruled out for the rest of the season with a tendon injury.

TOP CHELTENHAM HOPEFUL Last Instalment has been ruled out for the rest of the season after picking up an injury at Leopardstown last weekend.

The seven-year-old, who races in the colours of Michael O’Leary’s Gigginstown House Stud, damaged tendons during his win in the Grade 1 Dr PJ Moriarty Novice Chase.

Trainer Philip Fenton said today that the horse won’t race again this season, but “will hopefully be back next year” (see Racing Post).

Last Instalment has won all four of his starts since his switch to chasing this season, following up his early promise with wins in the Grade 1 Fort Leney Novice Chase before Christmas and a one-and-a-half-length win over Willie Mullins’ Call The Police on Sunday.

Before his withdrawal, bookmakers had priced him as short as 7/1 for the RSA Chase, his expected target at next month’s Cheltenham Festival.

Last season’s World Hurdle runner-up Grand Crus remains the strong favourite for the RSA at 9/4, with Bobs Worth (9/2) and Last Instalment’s Gigginstown companion First Lieutenant (7/1) also featuring at the top end of the market.

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