O'Brien targets National with Past

Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup third Forget The Past will be trained for the John Smith’s Grand National in April – if he recovers from a back problem in time.

Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup third Forget The Past will be trained for the John Smith’s Grand National in April – if he recovers from a back problem in time.

Last season’s winner of the Red Mills and Bobby Jo Chases went on to chase home War Of Attrition at the Festival in March, but has not been seen since disappointing behind Mouse Morris’s charge a month later.

His trainer Michael O’Brien this weekend revealed the eight-year-old has suffered a setback, but hopes to get him back on track with an assault on the Aintree showpiece in mind.

“He has been having treatment on a back problem,” said O’Brien.

“Two of his vertebrae have been rubbing together. We think it could have happened early in the year during a schooling mishap on the Curragh.

“If the treatment works he will reappear at Leopardstown over Christmas and he will then be trained with the Grand National in mind.

“If he isn’t right then we will give the rest of this season a miss.”

O’Brien was on the mark with Gold Cup aspirant In Compliance at Punchestown on Sunday, and added: “Forget The Past doesn’t have pace, he’s just a big bulbous horse that gallops along and he doesn’t have the speed of In Compliance.”

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