Veteran Irish star Big Zeb to swerve Cheltenham Festival in March

Last Updated: 11/01/13 10:44am

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Colm Murphy has confirmed that stable stalwart Big Zeb will swerve Cheltenham this year and wait for Punchestown.

The 2010 Queen Mother Champion Chase winner has so far not shown the same lustre as in previous seasons, and was last seen finishing fourth behind Sizing Europe in his defence of the Paddy Power Dial-A-Bet Chase at Leopardstown.

Rather than head to Cheltenham in March, Big Zeb will instead have the Punchestown Festival a month later as a conditional aim.

Murphy said: "He was a bit sore after the race, but he's totally fine now and we are just ticking over with him.

"I've not really thought about where we go, but I suppose we should just wait and get some nice, good ground for him.

"He definitely won't be going (to Cheltenham). I imagine we'd end up looking at Punchestown."

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