Mishriff team set out Saudi Cup target

Mishriff is set to defend his Saudi Cup title after connections ruled out a Breeders’ Cup challenge.

The four-year-old had been under consideration for the Turf at Del Mar on November 6 after a fine campaign that saw him win in Riyadh in February, before adding further Group One glory in the Dubai Sheema Classic and the Juddmonte International at York.

Mishriff also placed in the Eclipse and King George for trainers John and Thady Gosden, but could finish only fourth when favourite for the Champion Stakes at Ascot last week.

The Prince Faisal-owned colt is now set to stay in training in 2022, with a Riyadh return uppermost in connections’ minds.

The owner’s racing manager Ted Voute said: “The Prince has said that unless a huge offer comes in for him to go to stud – and I think the likelihood of that is pretty slim at this stage of the year with all the marketing that’s required – then he will be back next year.

“In fairness to John, up until he won the Juddmonte, he was always of the opinion that Del Mar might be a bit sharp for a big horse like him.

“He thinks we should follow the same route as last year by freshening him up after the Champion before heading back to the Saudi Cup – that’s the target.

“Although he’s had a bit of time between his races this season, he has been on the go since February.

“John said we’ll aim for the same races in Europe again, although whether he ends up in the Champion Stakes or the Arc, we’ll have to see.”

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