Newmill, the runaway winner of last week’s Queen Mother Champion Chase, is likely to miss a clash with Brave Inca at the Punchestown Festival and instead line up in the Kerrygold Champion Chase.
The eight-year-old has twice chased home the Champion Hurdle winner this season but trainer John Joseph Murphy has elected to keep his charge over fences following his nine-length Cheltenham success.
“If he met Brave Inca again it would be a different story because our horse wasn’t fully wound up as we were teaching him to settle better and build up his confidence,” said the trainer.
“He came home from Cheltenham last Saturday as if he hadn’t had a race and he’s in great shape.
“He needs good ground and everything went according to plan on the day considering it was a late decision to run him in the Queen Mother rather than the Champion Hurdle.
“Given how things went last week, it is more likely we will keep him over fences,” he told The Racing Post.