The Kayley Woollacott trained Lalor has been a forgotten horse over the last year or so since his rise to fame in the sport and the handler has given a positive update on the chaser as he continues to regain fitness after an absence caused by atrial fibrillation.
The nine year old has not been seen for over a year on a racecourse with his last run coming at Cheltenham in January 2020 finishing a good third in a Grade Three Handicap Chase at the Trials meeting.
Lalor was a horse with superb potential in the 2018/2019 season winning the Grade Two Arkle Trial at Cheltenham in November and from there being one of the favourites to land the Grade One at the festival.
However, after a poor run in the Grade One Henry VIII Novices' Chase at Sandown, he went to the festival in lesser form and ultimately flopped in the Arkle when being pulled up.
The German bred gelding lost his way for a while after that putting in weak performances in defeat at both Aintree and Exeter at it looked like the demise of what could have been a promising career.
However, in January 2020 he was rejuvenated into a stunning third in a three-way photo finish in the Paddy Power Handicap Chase, only being beaten by a short head and he used that run again to finish a good third at the Trials meeting.
With hope for the horse to rebuild his career, it was cut majorly short with vets then diagnosing him with an irregular heartbeat just as he was gaining fitness ahead of the current season and he has not been seen since.
(Credit ATR) His trainer Kayley Woollacott said: “He was nearly ready to run, late last year, November time I think.
“We wanted to get him out and then he did a flat piece of work, it was a bit of a headscratcher.
“Then we found it pretty quickly, luckily we’ve got a good team of vets and he got treated in early December.”
Woollacott has had a tough time with her stable star, trying to get him back to fitness and stumbling upon complications along the way, but she now reveals he is recovering well and could possibly seen before the end of the season.
“He had the treatment for the atrial fibrillation, but unfortunately he had a few complications after, which was really unfortunate and really rare,” she said.
“He’s come out of it now and he seems OK. We are going along with him, but we are in a bit of a time battle as to whether we’ll be able to get him out this season or not.
“The one saving grace with him, I suppose, is that he loves good ground so he could go right into the spring. If we just turned up at the Festival or Aintree, he would manage.
“We’re just playing it by ear, he’ll tell us when he’s ready.”