August 14, 2022

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The await Stradivarius’ swansong goes on as Bjorn Neilson confirms the legendary horse will maintain working

For round seven years now, British flat racing’s Lengthy Distance division has performed to the tune of Stradivarius. The John Gosden-trained horse has had the world at his toes, successful an unimaginable 18 group races so far in his improbable profession — together with 4 Goodwood Cups and three Ascot Gold Cups — and the eight-year-old isn’t prepared for the orchestra to bid him farewell simply but. 

It was a shock to many racing followers and pundits when Bjorn Neilson, Stradivarius’ proprietor, confirmed that he would proceed racing this season — with the principle goal, in fact, to match Yeats’ file of 4 Gold Cup successes. That didn’t materialise although, with jockey Frankie Dettori receiving a lot of the slack because the horse completed third to Kyprios within the Ascot showpiece.

However ‘swansong’ after reported ‘swansong’, the present continues to go on for Stradivarius on his farewell tour. Each time he takes the observe now, it’s believed to be the final look of his lengthy profession. However he retains coming again for encores and whereas he could not have received the Goodwood Cup not too long ago, he definitely gave a very good account of himself within the prestigious Group 1 contest. 

There was a variety of speak within the construct as much as Superb Goodwood after Neilson made the controversial determination to take Dettori, who received 15 group contests within the saddle of Stradivarius, off his mount and provides the experience to fellow Italian Andrea Atzeni. However all that was forgotten when Strad and Atzeni had each likelihood within the closing phases of the Goodwood Cup, simply being denied by the neck of Kyprios in one of many races of the yr. 

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With a efficiency like that in a prime race in opposition to a Gold Cup winner, it was at all times going to be tough for Neilson to verify afterwards it really was his prized asset’s swansong — and, considerably unsurprisingly, the horse’s proprietor confirmed that it was, the truth is, not the ultimate race of his illustrious profession.

“We’re not going to say goodbye after that,” Nielsen stated, ruling out retirement. “When he’s on the prime of his sport and I feel he ran like that at present.

“He has nonetheless run within the final yr or two like he has his enthusiasm and he nonetheless coaching properly.

“There is no such thing as a level stopping him in the course of the season. That is the perfect Goodwood Cup – it was lined as much as be an amazing race and going into this race at present I believed he might win or end third or fourth.

“He has run inside a head of the Gold Cup winner and I feel it was an incredible efficiency and we’ll go on for not less than yet another.”

The following race on the agenda for Stradivarius is believed to the Group 2 Lonsdale Cup at York on August 19th. However with that additionally being the possible comply with up race for Kyprios after his Goodwood Cup success, we wouldn’t go placing our Betfair provide — wager 10 get 30 — on Stradivarius to beat Aidan O’Brien’s Gold Cup winner. Nor would we again the two-mile, half a furlong contest to be the eight-year-old’s ultimate outing. 

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There’s additionally an opportunity that Dettori will rekindle his partnership with Stradivarius, as Nielsen refused to rule out the veteran Italian returning to the saddle at York. However that seems to a dialogue that’s but to have been had with the proprietor and the Gosden clan. 

“Frankie has dealt with him properly at York however I don’t know whether or not he’ll experience him and haven’t mentioned that with John and Thady. Frankie was class at present to return out and say good luck to Andrea beforehand in any case these years,” Neilsen added.

Solely the Gosdens, who’ve claimed ‘so long as he’s blissful and having fun with his racing and coaching, there’s no purpose [to finish]’, and Neilson actually know what the longer term holds for Stradivarius past the Lonsdale Cup. So all we are able to do for now could be proceed to understand him whereas we nonetheless can and hope he comes house protected earlier than ultimately setting off in to the sundown.