Willie Mullins has delivered hope to Douvan fans by revealing he could yet make the Cheltenham Festival.
The Irish champion trainer revealed just a few weeks ago, that injury meant Douvan would not be taking to the track this season as he was ‘intermittently lame’.
But now Mullins has admitted that there been some encouraging signs from the eight-year old and although he unlikely to make it to the Festival, he will be entering him.
Mullins, in his Saturday column for the Racing Post, said: “We’ve been pleasantly surprised by how well things are going with him.
“It’s a long shot at this stage and getting him back on the track this season might not be a runner, but we are cautiously optimistic now compared with his situation a month ago.”
Despite Douvan’s injury concerns, Bookmakers still make him second favourite with Betfair pricing him at 3/1 for the Queen Mother Champion Chase – with rival Altior the odds-on favourite at 5/6.
Betfair are also offering Douvan at 7/2 non-runner, no bet.
“We did not have him listed but in light of Willie Mullins’s comments we have now reintroduced him to the market,” confirmed spokesman Barry Orr.