Legendary English trainer Sir Michael Stoute is hoping to send Carlton House out a winner in the Group 1 HK$22m Longines Hong Kong Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin on Sunday before the four year old heads to Gai Waterhouse’s Tulloch Lodge in Sydney.
Carlton House is owned by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and will be the British Monarch’s first runner in Hong Kong before heading to Australia after running on the weekend.
Stoute is confident that Carlton House will race well at Sha Tin and is the right type of horse to perform at the top level under Australian conditions after the Queen’s racing adviser John Warren suggested sending the four year old down under.
“It was a plan that John Warren, the Queen’s racing adviser, came up with and he could be very well suited,” Stoute said.
“There is a good program in Australia for a horse like him.
“He goes on any ground, his optimum trip is 2,000 metres – he won the Dante Stakes at that distance last year and probably his best racecourse performance was his second to So You Think in the Prince Of Wales at Royal Ascot in June. There is a good programme there at that distance.”
“This is tough, but he’s consistent, racing at his best trip and he travelled over well. I’m hopeful he can get in the frame and if he did I’d be happy.”
Carlton House is a lightly raced Street Cry stallion and as well as winning at Group 2 and 3 level showed he was right up with the best with a fighting second to dual Cox Plate winner So You Think in the Group 1 £500,000 150th Anniversary Of Prince Of Wales’s Stakes (1 mile 2 furlongs) at Royal Ascot on June 20.
This followed his win in the Group 3 £55,000 Betfair Brigadier Gerard Stakes (1 mile, 2 furlongs) at Sandown on May 31 while Carlton House’s other Group win was in the Group 2 £150,000 Totesport Dante Stakes (1 mile, 2 ½ furlongs) at York on May 12, 2011.
Waterhouse has shown this year that she has a knack for training English gallopers with Glencadam Gold flying the flag for the imports with an all the way win in the Group 1 $400,000 McGrath Estate Agents Metropolitan (2400m) at Randwick on October 6.
And English stayer Fiorente running a mighty race at his first run for Tulloch Lodge when second to Green Moon in the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 6.
Carlton House heads to Sha Tin after finishing fourth to Excelebration in the Group 1 £1m Queen Elizabeth II Stakes Sponsored by QIPCO (British Champions Mile) (1 mile) at Ascot on October 20 and is $15 in the early market order for the Hong Kong Cup.
French galloper Cirrus Des Aigles heads the betting at $2.50 in front of local galloper California Memory at $4.60 with the other French runners Saonois at $7.50 and Giofra at $9 with Australian galloper Alcopop at $13.