Grand National contender Three Faces West has been ruled out for the season with a suspensory problem.
Trained by Philip Hobbs, the Paul and Clare Rooney-owned nine-year-old had hit a rich vein of form recently.
A winner at Haydock in November, he defied a 12lb higher mark at Newbury and was being aimed at the Grand National.
"We did hope Three Faces West would be going to the National but he got a suspensory problem at the back of a knee which has pushed him out this year," said Rooney.
The Rooneys had the thrill of seeing their The Last Samuri finish second to Rule The World in the National last season and he remains on course to return to Aintree.
Rooney told Racing UK: "Samuri is fine, and he'll probably go to the Grimthorpe (at Doncaster) before the National."