Stoute planning to focus Telescope on Sandown tilt
Michael Stoute's one-time Derby favourite Telescope is likely to begin his four-year-old campaign in the Gordon Richards Stakes at Sandown at the end of the month.
The Highclere Thoroughbreds-owned colt was a leading contender for the 2013 Epsom Classic after losing his maiden tag at the second time of asking the previous autumn. However, setbacks kept him off the track until last July, when he returned to storm 24 lengths clear of his two rivals at Leicester, before getting turned over by David Livingstone in a Haydock Group Three.
At York 11 days later, Telescope signed off for the season by beating Foundry in the Great Voltigeur Stakes and Highclere's racing manager Harry Herbert believes he is a stronger horse now. "He is in great form and has done very well from three to four," he said. "He certainly looks the part and he is a much fuller, more mature horse than he was as a three-year-old.
"The plan is for him to start off in the Gordon Richards Stakes at Sandown."
Richard Fahey has also outlined plans for his Newbury entries this Saturday. Sandiva will skip the Fred Darling Stakes in favour of having her Classic credentials tested at Newmarket next Wednesday.
Dutch Courage, which won twice as a juvenile, will instead represent the Malton-based handler in Saturday's seven-furlong Group Three, with the Group Two Mill Reef winner Supplicant, likewise owned by Cheveley Park Stud, his nominated runner in the Greenham Stakes for colts.
Meanwhile, Flying Officer, a full-brother to 2007 St Leger hero Lucarno, was the star turn of a sparkling 154/1 treble for John Gosden and his stable jockey William Buick at Nottingham yesterday.
Jamie Spencer also got on the score sheet with the David Barron-trained long odds-on shot Pearl Secret for his Oatar Racing employers, while Graham Lee enjoyed a 27/1 brace aboard Maxie T and Orient Class at Catterick.