Oliver Sherwood has given an upbeat bulletin on Deputy Dan

Last Updated: 13/01/14 12:21pm

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Deputy Dan: Still on track for Cheltenham

Deputy Dan: Still on track for Cheltenham

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Deputy Dan ran out an impressive winner of the Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle at Warwick on Saturday to record his fourth win in seven career starts.

Oliver Sherwood's youngster sustained a cut en route to victory leaving connections concerned that it could rule the gelding out of his big race targets at the end of the season.

The Lambourn handler was, however, able to issue an upbeat bulletin on Monday, telling At The Races: "He's fine, he's just come back from the Valley Equine Hospital this morning having spent the weekend there.

"He got what is known as a deep laceration to the bulb of his heel, the off-hind, he's got to have a week standing in his box; best case scenario, this time next week, he'll be ridden out and have a week on the roads and then carry on as normal.

"Worse case scenario, he'll have to have another week standing in his box but it's very clean and the vets at Warwick did a great job. We shipped him straight from Warwick to Lambourn and it's just a question of infection and getting the whole thing cleaned up and tidied up."

Sherwood was able to confirm that the injury wouldn't damage Deputy Dan's preparations for the Cheltenham Festival.

"It wouldn't affect him. He'd have had a quiet week without this; as long as it's not any longer than two weeks it won't affect him at all," he added.

"I've got to speak to Leighton [Aspell] but he'll have two entries in the Neptune and the Albert Bartlett; I would be favouring the Neptune at the moment but if it dried up and became really good ground I would re-route to the Albert Bartlett but let's get there first."

Sherwood also saddled Mischievous Milly in a Grade Three Mares' Hurdle at the Midlands venue and the six-year-old ran a fine race to finish a three quarter of a length second to Glens Melody with the winner having to survive a stewards inquiry.

"Mischievous Milly was hampered at the hurdle past the winning post on the first circuit. It was a good run and she'll definitely run in the David Nicholson [OLBG Mares' Hurdle] and take on Quevega; I was chuffed to bits with her," he revealed.

Sherwood was also able to report that Puffin Billy, who runs in the same ownership as Deputy Dan, has recovered from an operation for colic and will return next season to embark on a novice chase career.

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