John Gosden gave a strong sign of hope once in the Reach For The Moon Queen’s Derby that his seasonal reappearance was more than a mile away in the Coral Heron Stakes at Sandown Park on Thursday.
The son of Sea The Stars has been assisted to end the Queen’s wait for a top Epsom Classic winner after his encouraging second in the Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot and victory in Solario Staking. But the three-year-old has been sidelined since finishing second behind Bayside Boy in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster in September.
After the interrupted preparations for his three-year campaign, the dreams of Epsom were finally shelved and attention turned to fighting Reach For The Moon fit for the Royal meeting on Sunday. end of June.
His trainer now reports if that goal is achieved, the foal needs to get on the right track sooner rather than later, and the listed contest that the Clarehaven team dominated late in the hour is the perfect place to Reach For The Moon adjusts for Ascot’s obligations.
Gosden told Racing TV’s Luck On Sunday: “We all know he got injured last year and he couldn’t go to Dewhurst and he’s been out for a long time.
“He’s back at the stud farm in Sandringham and they’ve done the most amazing job with him and he’s back with us and we’ve been so hard and careful with him.
“From his job now, he’s ready to run, but I want to make it clear that he’s only around 80-85%. But if I don’t run him at Heron we’re going to have a hard time. to get him to Ascot because if you look at it, from his assessment the only other options are to carry the highest weight in an older equine handicap, so it makes sense to run him at Sandown, which I hope to do at this stage. Sandown, right- delivered with a tough finish, is a good trail to Ascot.”
The last three Heron Stakes winners of the stables will all go on to compete in the more than one-mile St James’s Palace Stakes next time around, and Gosden agrees that it remains to be seen how the ideal Reach For The Moon ride can be. whatever it may be, also reveals the king’s words of wisdom about the dam, who was won by the Victory List over seven feathers.
Gosden continued: “I think if anything after talking to Frankie (Dettori) after his workday yesterday he could be a horse running a mile and a half, that’s the feeling that he gets and he’s a pretty astute judge at this stage of his young, growing career.
“I think that’s going to be the argument we’re all going to have, as His Majesty has pointed out, the very, very, very nimble mother.”
The Gosdens have had a good couple of days, including the successful return of Stradivarius and both Emily Upjohn and Nashwa cementing their positions as two of the top-filling characters in the three-year-old.
One of their other stars, Inspiral, also has the rights to join the Heron Stakes but Gosden is less certain about her first docks.
Frankel’s undefeated daughter was the favorite before her 1000 Guineas crown before missing the race after a setback and her coach is weighing the merits of all her possible options including Sandown, Irish 1,000 Guineas or waiting for a Coronation Share in Royal Ascot.
“I can’t (confirm her participation in Irish Guineas) because I think that’s something I’ll discuss tomorrow,” Gosden added.
“At this stage we’re very happy with her, but it’s been a rough spring for her. We’ve been very open about that and we’ll just see if it’s the right thing to do. to get her on the plane and fly her there for her first race, or whether we sit tight and can run here, or just wait for Ascot. discuss.
“She was celebrated in the spring, it happens but she looks good, she did a good job here yesterday, but when you miss your prep time, you don’t want to cut a corner to catch up, that never worked.”