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Flying Five 'not ruled out' for dual Nunthorpe hero Battaash

Thu 27 Aug 2020

Charlie Hills has not ruled out sending stable star Battaash to Ireland for the Derrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes at the Curragh.

The five-furlong prize on September 13 is the only Group One sprint in Europe over the minimum trip missing from the CV of the six-year-old gelding.

Having gained a first King’s Stand success on his return to action at Royal Ascot in June before securing a record-breaking fourth King George Stakes at Goodwood, Battaash maintained his unbeaten status this campaign when registering back-to-back victories in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes at York last week.

Hills said: “We will keep all the options open for Battaash and just see how the horse is and go from there. I’m happy though with the way he has come out of the York race.

“We have got Ireland, France for the Abbaye, then America for the Breeders’ Cup and they are probably the only three races for him.

“We will have a chat with the team next week. No decision has been made, but Ireland has certainly not been ruled out.

“We have just got to look at the travel options and see what opportunities there are to do what, and hopefully get it right.”

Thoroughbred Stakes winner Tilsit could make his first start at Group One level on Sunday week in the Prix du Moulin at ParisLongchamp.

The mile contest is one of two races under consideration for the First Defence colt, along with the Group Two Clipper Logistics Boomerang Mile at Leopardstown on September 12.

Hills said: “He had a small setback which meant we missed a few days with him, so we had to miss the Celebration Mile at Goodwood on Saturday.

“I’m very happy with the horse now and he worked really well on Wednesday. The Moulin is an option and there is the Boomerang Mile which he would need supplementing for, but I’ve still got to talk to the team at Juddmonte first.”

The Lambourn handler expects Tilsit to have learnt plenty from his latest victory after being forced to survive a stewards’ inquiry before being announced the winner of the Goodwood Group Three.

He added: “I think it was just through greenness what he did at Goodwood when hanging late on. Ryan Moore really liked him.

“That was only the third start of his career, so hopefully he will improve.”

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