John Quinn has put the Breeders’ Cup Mile top of the agenda for Safe Voyage following his latest big-race success in Ireland on Saturday.
Following an impressive display in last month’s City of York Stakes, the seven-year-old doubled his Group Two tally and claimed his 12th career victory overall with the narrowest of triumphs over Sinawann in the Boomerang Stakes at Leopardstown.
A step up to Group One level beckons for a horse clearly in the form of his life – and while both the Prix de la Foret at ParisLongchamp and the QEII at Ascot are under consideration, it is the two-turn mile at Keeneland in November which whets Quinn’s appetite the most.
Reflecting on Saturday’s win, he said: “We’re delighted it just went his way. I think he deserved it as he’s so tough and admirable – everything you want in a top-class racehorse.
“It was his first win over a mile, which is great – it opens up other doors.
“We’ll see how he comes out of the race, but I’m going to work back from the Breeders’ Cup. We can look at the Foret and the QEII, but he’ll only run in one of those, if any.
“They’re all very good races, but the Breeders’ Cup Mile is the race that appeals the most.”
A fine weekend for the Malton-based trainer almost got even better at the Curragh on Sunday, with Keep Busy beaten just half a length in the Group One Flying Five Stakes by a fellow Yorkshire raider in Kevin Ryan’s Glass Slippers.
Quinn was unsurprisingly delighted with Keep Busy’s display – and far from disappointed by the performance of her better-fancied stablemate Liberty Beach in finishing seventh in the same race.
“It was a phenomenal run from Keep Busy – she doesn’t know how to run a bad race,” Quinn added.
“She got a bump from a horse going backwards and was beaten half a length, but that’s racing and full credit to Kevin and all the connections of the winner.
“Liberty Beach ran a good race as well. She just had no luck in running and was only beaten three lengths.
“They’re both entered in the Prix de l’Abbaye and if they’re both well, that’s where they’ll go.”