Siskin has Breeders’ Cup Mile target before stud duties in Japan

Siskin is being aimed at the Breeders’ Cup Mile and will then head to Japan to stand at stud.

Trained by Ger Lyons, the First Defence colt won the Irish 2,000 Guineas in tremendous style earlier in the season, stretching his unbeaten run to five.

Since then he has been beaten in the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood and the Prix du Moulin, losing his chance in the latter having become upset on loading into the stalls.

“He’s worked this morning, he’s in great order and looks fantastic,” said Lyons on Wednesday, speaking on Nick Luck’s Daily Podcast.

“This year was about the Guineas, the Sussex, come back for a light campaign, maybe the Boomerang and have a look at the QEII ground depending, but that has been put on hold.

“I didn’t want to send him as a three-year-old to the Breeders’ Cup, but he won’t be staying in training at four so the Breeders’ Cup now becomes an option and at this moment he is being trained with that in mind.

“He’s going to stand in Japan. I’m gutted. In many ways I’m delighted for him as he’ll get a serious quality book of mares that he maybe wouldn’t get in Ireland, but I’d have loved to have trained him at four.

“It just goes to show where we are in the industry when powerhouses like Juddmonte and Coolmore still have to sell their best horses for economic reasons.

“I thought when I got to the stage of winning a Guineas and an Oaks we’d get to see their careers out. We got to this stage by selling our best horses yet here we are, at the top table, still selling our best horses which is disappointing and frustrating to say the least.”

Lyons is happy to put a line through his Moulin run, a second time Siskin has had problems at the start after the Middle Park last season.

He went on: “His run in France was a non event. The stalls thing reared its ugly head again. I keep saying he’s never shown issues at home, but he’s let me down twice now. They put the hood on him and then it became a non-event.

“The Moulin wasn’t part of my plan and any time I’ve changed my plan mid-season it’s never worked out. It changed because the ground was nice and there were sales and things going on behind the scenes. I would have personally loved to have played it safe and gone for the Boomerang.”

While Siskin is being trained for the Breeders’ Cup meeting, he would only run if the ground is on the quick side.

“It has been lovely ground at Keeneland, but I got a video through yesterday of torrential rain. I worked in Keeneland so I’ll have to touch base. I wouldn’t like to see him over there on soft ground,” said Lyons.

“If it was a three-year-old race you’d stick your chest out and take any of them on, but the older horses are the spoke in the wheel.”

Options open for Classic hero Siskin

Connections of Siskin are contemplating their next move after he finished fourth in a high-class renewal of the Prix du Moulin.

Ger Lyons’ stable star won the first five races of his career, with Group One triumphs coming in the Phoenix Stakes last season and the Irish 2,000 Guineas three months ago.

The son of First Defence lost his unbeaten record in the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood, but was far from disgraced in finishing third behind the now-retired Mohaather.

However, he could never get involved behind Persian King on his latest appearance in France.

“It was probably the best race over a mile there’s been for quite some time, given there were six Group One winners in it,” said Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager for Siskin’s owner Khalid Abdullah.

“We’re being reflective at the moment, but he’s come out of the race well. We’re just contemplating at the moment.

“He hasn’t done much since the race. He won’t be going for the Prix de la Foret, but there are still other considerations for him.

“I think we just want to get him back into good form with himself, that’s the main thing.”