All systems go for Battaash and Goodwood

Charlie Hills is pleased with the way Battaash has recovered from his King’s Stand Stakes exertions.

While the seven-year-old lost his crown to Oxted, Hills felt he had valid excuses for the Royal Ascot reverse.

A red-hot early pace and it being Battaash’s first run of the campaign contributed to him becoming “leg-weary” in the closing stages, felt Hills, who is following his usual campaign to Goodwood next – where he will bid for a remarkable fifth successive King George Qatar Stakes success.

“He’s come out of the race really well actually, he’s been cantering away this week and we’re really pleased with him,” said Hills.

“They went really fast and with it being first time out it just caught him out.

“It’s a stiff five furlongs at Ascot, it has never really played to his strengths and he just got tired and a bit leg-weary in the last half furlong.

“He’s also there to be shot out when it transpires like that.

“We’ll go to Goodwood now, his races are pretty obvious.”

Mutasaabeq disappointed in the Jersey Stakes
Mutasaabeq disappointed in the Jersey Stakes (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Hills also held high hopes for Mutasaabeq in the Jersey Stakes, but he ran way below expectations and only beat two home.

“I don’t think the testing ground helped him, but he was beaten a long way out,” said Hills.

“I was disappointed with the run and we’ll get him fully checked over this week.

“Given his form he should have been in the mix so he’s run below par. We’ll do all the tests we can.”

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