Cowell eager to resolve Clarendon House stalls issue

Robert Cowell has put plans on hold for Clarendon House after he remained in the stalls at the start of the Dash at Epsom on Derby day.

The six-year-old’s race was run as he eventually emerged well adrift of the field. The Tom Marquand-ridden six-year old trailed in last of the 14 runners on the Surrey Downs, 24 lengths behind the 6-1 winner Dream Composer.

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It was a disappointing day out for the Mehmas gelding after winning a York handicap so impressively during the Dante Festival.

And now his Newmarket-based handler wants to get to the bottom of the issue before deciding where Clarendon House will head next.

Cowell said: “He’s not behaved like that (before) at all. He’s a quirky character, but he has never had an issue coming out of the gate so we are going to get the Withefords in, who specialise in this sort of behaviour.

Robert Cowell
Robert Cowell (Mike Egerton/PA)

“They are going to have a look at him on Thursday to see how they can help him, but we need to iron this problem out now rather than later before it becomes a problem.

“At the moment it is hopefully just a one-off.”

The Listed Achilles Stakes at Haydock on Saturday was a potential option, but Cowell has now ruled that out until his issues with the stalls have been fixed.

Cowell added: “There are not really any plans going forward, I think we need to get this problem ironed out first before making any more entries.

“We were half-discussing maybe Haydock at the weekend, but it’s too soon after we get him looked at.

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“We’ll get this problem ironed out and then we’ll have a look.”

Looking ahead, Cowell is hopeful Clarendon House will be ready to stake his claim in the Nunthorpe Stakes in August during the Ebor Festival at York.

“The long-term target will hopefully be the Nunthorpe, before then I don’t know yet, maybe Goodwood, I’m not sure,” said Cowell.

“I wouldn’t rule out going back (to the Middle East over the winter) because he likes fast ground and he enjoyed it out there.

“I think there will be plenty of big targets for him because he has got that type of rating now, we just have to jump this next hurdle first before making any concrete plans.”

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