Connections of Torquator Tasso are “looking forward” to locking horns again with Ascot conqueror Pyledriver when he bids to defend his Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe crown.
The German star made a bold bid to emulate compatriots Danedream and Novellist in finishing two and three-quarter lengths behind Pyledriver in the midsummer all-aged showpiece on Saturday.
Despite encountering quicker ground on his British debut than he had when landing the Arc, the Torquator Tasso camp were offering no excuses for defeat in the mile-and-a-half Group One contest.
The five-year-old arrived safely back in Mulheim, where trainer Marcel Weiss is based, on Sunday afternoon.
He will now be aimed at the Grosser Preis von Baden, a race he won last year en route to his shock 80-1 victory at ParisLongchamp.
“He was very well and had no problems with the journey,” said part-owner Peter-Michael Endres. “It was no problem for him.
“Our thought now is to bring him to Baden-Baden for his next race (in September) and then to the Arc.
“It will be a similar route to last year. The only change was that he went to Ascot and that was the right decision.”
Following his fine effort in defeat, where he had last year’s runaway Juddmonte International winner Mishriff eight lengths behind in third, Torquator Tasso was cut to 8-1 (from 25s) with William Hill to land a second Arc.
Desert Crown, who missed the race and will also bypass the International at York following a setback, still heads the market for October 2 feature with most firms.
Endres said connections of the Adlerflug colt were “delighted” to have taken their chance at Ascot, and insisted Torquator Tasso showed his ground versatility.
“I think he can go on this (quicker) ground – as we have seen,” said Endres. “On softer ground, some of the other horses are not as good on it as he is.”
He added: “The hospitality at Ascot was marvellous. It was a very good journey. We like to win, but to gain second place and also how he has done it, we are very happy about that.”
While Irish Derby winner Westover and Oaks runner-up Emily Upjohn may have had their excuses, Endres said anyone questioning the worth of the form should think again.
“When he won the Arc, people thought the horses he beat were not as good as they thought before,” added Endres.
“Now you think nearly the best three-year-olds had problems against older horses – and he is one of the best. So, we are looking forward to going back to the Arc.”