Unbeaten St Leger winner Logician suffered from an infection over the winter and will not be ready for any early assignments this season.
The striking grey son of Frankel was unraced as a two-year-old but made up for lost time last term. He won each of his five races and signed off with victory in the final Classic of the year in a course record time.
However, the John Gosden-trained colt, owned by Prince Khalid Abdullah, did not have a straightforward time after his triumph on Town Moor.
“He had a difficult time through late autumn to Christmas but he’s doing a whole lot better now,” Gosden told racingtv.com. “He won’t be winging out to Meydan at the end of March. We are looking more at May or June.”
The champion trainer confirmed that Logician will drop back in distance, despite the ease of his success over an extended mile and three quarters at Doncaster.
“A mile and a quarter, or a mile and a half will be fine for him,” he said. “I know he won a Leger, but he won it on class. I don’t think he requires that trip.”
Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager for Prince Khalid, added: “Logician was treated for an infection over the winter, which has been cleared up successfully. He will be a little bit behind. I would think we will be looking for him to come out in the summer.”
Ten-time Group One winner Enable, kept in training at six, races in the same silks and is also trained by Gosden.
The possibility of her being entered along with Logician for the same top races this summer, such as the Coral-Eclipse and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes, is high but Grimthorpe does not expect juggling the programmes of the star pair to cause any headaches.
Enable was named Cartier Horse of the Year after her exploits last year
He said: “I think it’s a very nice problem to have. Nothing has been cast in stone but I wouldn’t have thought they will meet early doors. We will see.
“What people don’t get is how difficult it is to get a horse to a particular race all on schedule. It takes a lot of good management, good training, good riding and a good bit of luck.
“I think if we’ve got two fighting fit horses at the end of the year we will be absolutely thrilled.”
Enable was kept off the track until September the season before last because of injury and she did not make her return until July last year, when she won the Coral-Eclipse. Further victories in the King George and Yorkshire Oaks followed before her attempt to win a record third Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe ended in narrow defeat at the hands of Waldgeist.
The Arc, for which she is a general 6-1, will again be her principal aim but the hope is that she will resume a little earlier this campaign.
“The main objective is still the Prix de l’arc de Triopmphe and how she gets there will be determined first of all by her wellbeing,” Grimthorpe said.
Super stayer Stradivarius is apparently on great terms with himself
“I’d hope we’d have her going by June – possibly the Coronation Cup or Royal Ascot. Last year she took a bit longer to come to hand, so we went to the Eclipse first. It will be pretty much up to her.
“You need to have a good programme to be at your best in the first weekend in October.”
He added: “The beauty of her is that she wants to do it and enjoys her racing tremendously. Prince Khalid loves to race his horses. Obviously it was an important decision for him to keep her in training but he is a racing fan and enjoys these tremendous moments.”
Gosden said: “She’s been a pleasure to train because she’s out there every day trying to do her best. The greatest risk is that she will overdo herself because she’s that generous.
“The target is the first Sunday in October and the two co-champions (Crystal Ocean and Waldgeist) with her have retired, so now we’ve got to worry about the youngsters coming along.”
Gosden could have other aces to play in Paris in the autumn as Logician (a general 16-1), Stradivarius (available at 40-1) and Star Catcher (a best-priced 33-1) are all possible contenders.
Watch again how Star Catcher won the Irish Oaks last summer
“All of those could look towards that great race,” Gosden confirmed. “They will get an entry in May and we will see how they are closer to the time. Stradivarius would not want deep ground and it can be that way in the autumn in Paris.”
“He’s in great form, our boy. He’s happy, bouncing, shouting and announcing himself to everybody,” Gosden said. “Bjorn Nielsen, his owner/breeder is passionate about trying to win the Ascot Gold Cup for a third time and it’s all geared to that. We’ll aim to have one run before.
“He’s such a fun horse to be around; he is an absolute riot.”
Star Catcher won three Group One races last year but to some extent stayed under the radar. “She’s a sweet filly and very brave,” Gosden said. “She’s quite diminutive but is a street fighter. She come to hand quite quickly, and she’ll tell me when she’s ready.”
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