Lonsdale Cup hero Quickthorn are set to skip Ireland’s St Leger, with Hughie Morrison eyeing riches in France as well as the traditional Remainer Division call-up to Ascot on Qipco’s British Champions Day.
The five-year-old capitalized on the absence of Stradivarius and Trueshan to take a 14-length win in the York Two-Mile Group Two, but it’s hard to say whether these two long-distance stars would have beaten the son. from Nathaniel, who has now racked up a string of three group-level wins since changing tactics to take the lead.
Second when he was retained in both the Further Flight Stakes and the Sagaro Stakes in April, Quickthorn first went all out in Sandown’s Henry II Stakes before repeating the dose to force his favored supports into the Group 2nd in the Prix Maurice de Nieuil de Longchamp.
His efforts at the Knavesmire are likely to rule him out of a trip to the Curragh and, reflecting further on York and options for the future, Morrison said: “He’s doing well physically, I think you can see that’s going well. ‘might hit it’s a He looks good but the boy riding him says he’s just a little calmer.
“I think Ireland is very unlikely and it will be one or two of the options in the fall which are the Prix du Cadran, the Prix Royal-Oak or the Long Distance Cup.”
Those who had watched Quickthorn’s previous victories would not have been shocked to see Tom Marquand putting hot fractions on the Knavesmire and Morrison thinks that while it was a great race much of the credit must go to the horse, who proves to be a playful leader in races over marathon distances.
He continued: “I found it quite irritating, and I think Tom recognized it as well, when people were saying what a brilliant race it was. [at York]. It was, but it was a brilliant run at Sandown when he went out front and did the same to them, which gave us the confidence to do it in the future.
“All he did was do what he had done twice before. I think the others just struggled to go with him and I read something that said the sections were very fast. If you compare it with the two-mile handicap two days before and the Ebor, the mid-race sections were very fast.
“Hopefully we can keep him in the same shape. I do very little with him and I won’t really know to be honest. He hasn’t really worked hard between his races this summer. I’m just a name on paper but it’s good for morale.”
The Summerdown Stables manager also provided an update on the talented filly stay alertwho is preparing for a tilt at the Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes at Ascot on October 15.
Off the track since finishing fifth in a savory Lancashire Oaks replay, she is already a Listed winner and put in a fine performance chasing Nashwa to Newbury on just her third outing.
“She’s in good shape, we just felt she had a pretty busy start to the season,” Morrison said. “I think Lancashire Oaks turned out to be a really good race – the winner hasn’t raced since, but the runner-up has come out and won twice.
“My ideal scenario is to have a nice run and a little kick in two or three weeks, kind of a three-quarter run for a bit of experience, because she still lacks a bit of experience really. Then take part in the race of fillies and mares on Champions Day.
“We know she likes soft ground and we think she’s a great filly, she just needs a bit of luck.”
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