Paul Nicholls is not expecting "fireworks" from Big Buck's in his racecourse gallop before racing at Exeter on Thursday.

The great staying hurdler, who is unbeaten in his last 18 races, has not been seen since making a winning reappearance at Newbury in the Long Distance Hurdle of December last year, having been found to be suffering from a leg injury later that month.

He has been back cantering since October, but Saturday's Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot comes too soon for him.

Instead, Nicholls has been aiming at the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham on 25 January for quite some time, and his exercise at Exeter will take him another step close to a comeback.

"He's just going to go over two miles, and it's as much a day out as anything, getting him to go in the horse box and so on," said Nicholls.

"I wouldn't expect fireworks, the aim's just to have a day out and then bring him back for another workout at the same course in a month's time. Exeter has been very good to allow us to come and do it."

The work is scheduled to take place at 12.15pm.