Stewart hoping Buck's can return
(Healy Racing Photos)
National Hunt racing's current superstar has been ruled out for the rest of the campaign with a tendon injury.
Big Buck's would have been bidding for his 19th consecutive victory in Saturday's Long Walk Hurdle but Stewart has high hopes that his pride and joy, who will be a 10-year-old going on 11 when he returns, should be as good as ever.
"The healing process is exactly the same for a nine or 10-year-old as it is for a four or five-year-old but then it is more difficult to get a 10-year-old fit," Stewart told At The Races.
"Obviously as they get older, it would take longer for me to get fit than one of my sons for instance.
"Let's put this in perspective, the horse is still walking, there's a more than 50-50 chance that he will race again.
"Everyday three people in England, Scotland and Wales are told due to a spinal injury they will never walk again, this horse will walk again so it's a small earthquake, no one has died.
"He's not in pain, he's walking his box like he always does.
"I think we'll have a good discussion in Barbados with Paul Nicholls, John Hales the owner of Al Ferof is coming down as well so we'll let this dust settle and talk about it in warmer climes."
Henry de Bromhead is weighing up his options ahead of the paddypower.com Future Champions Novices' Hurdle at Leopardstown on December 27th.