Trainer Amy Murphy says Kalashnikov looks back to his best after a disappointing run at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day.
The seven-year-old finished eighth earlier this month at Prestbury Park, with Oldgrangewood claiming the victory in the Paddy Power Handicap Chase.
Kalashnikov reportedly returned to Murphy’s stable in poor condition, with the Newmarket handler confirming he was ‘sick’.
After treatment, Murphy confirms her stable star is looking in good shape, and connections are now preparing for the Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
“He was sick after Cheltenham. He bled, and then he started coughing a few days after. I’d say he was harbouring something. I’d say that’s the reason he bled,” said Murphy.
“We can put a line through that run. He’d never been out of the first two in his life (when he has completed the course).
“He’s had some antibiotics, and he’s absolutely fine.
“He doesn’t have to run between now and the Ryanair unless I’m 100 per cent happy with him, but equally there are races like the Game Spirit.
“He’ll get entries, but we’ll see. He doesn’t have to go anywhere before Cheltenham.”