Time For Rupert has been given the green light to contest the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury on 1 December.
Paul Webber's Cheltenham Gold Cup fifth was well beaten on his comeback in the Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby on Saturday and will now switch to handicap company for the first time over fences.
While Webber still harbours big race dreams for his eight-year-old, he feels it could now be the Grand National rather than the Gold Cup that suits him best.
"I think Wetherby is a bit sharp for him," said Webber.
"It only takes 6 minutes to run three miles around Wetherby but it takes a lot longer at Cheltenham and Newbury, where he has run his best races.
"The plan was to let somebody else do the donkey work for a change but there was no gallop and Rupert is a strong stayer.
"Realistically he may never win a Gold Cup, you never know, but I think we'll lower our sights a little.
"He's been dropped a couple of pounds to 155 so we'll go to the Hennessy now.
"Denis (O'Regan) said a while ago that he's the perfect horse for the Grand National and I think he may be right one day.
"He's certainly a stronger horse this year."