LiveScore Racing News: Breeders' Cup still an option for Mishriff
Connections say Mishriff could still head to Del Mar for the Breeders' Cup next month — despite a disappointing performance in the Qipco Champion Stakes.
Mishriff has enjoyed a strong campaign with victories in the Saudi Cup, Sheema Classic and Juddmonte International Stakes.
The four-year-old was a length clear of Charlatan when claiming the Saudi Cup in Riyadh on dirt before edging out Chrono Genesis by a neck for the Sheema Classic in Meydan.
After joining John and Thady Gosden's yard in May, Mishriff finished third and second at Sandown and Ascot respectively.
He picked up a first Group One win on British soil in August when beating Alenquer by six lengths to scoop the Juddmonte International Stakes at York.
Connections had high hopes for their charge when returning to Ascot on Saturday for the 1m2f Qipco Champion Stakes.
But he struggled to find enough pace and had to settle for fourth — three-and-a-quarter lengths adrift of winner Sealiway.
Ted Voute, racing manager for owner Prince Faisal, admits that performance was well-under par and felt the going went against them.
He said: "It was slightly disappointing. We beat the Derby winner but we got swallowed up by horses who enjoyed the going a bit better than us.
"They had a bit of rain in the morning — and with both John and the jockey [David Egan], the first thing out of their mouths was that he wasn't going on the ground. You have to bow to their experience."
A run on the grass in the Breeders' Cup Turf at Del Mar next month appears to be the most likely option for Mishriff, although Voute has suggested they are considering a return to the dirt for the Breeders' Cup Classic.
He added: "John wants everything to be right for us to go, but that is his next target.
"It was spoken about on Sunday and the early indications were that he came out of the race OK. At the moment we've all been told to act as if we're going and the horse will let us know whether he's ready.
"John and the Prince will decide where to go. I suspect they'll go to the Turf — although just glancing through the Classic, I'd be happy to consider that race as well.
"It's up to the Prince and John really — and it's down to Mishriff and his well-being. All the boxes have got to be ticked and I'm sure John and the Prince will make the right decision."