Trainer Alan King is keen to get star stayer Trueshan up and running for the 2022 Flat season in the Listed Barry Hills Further Flight Stakes at Nottingham next week - as long as conditions are suitable.
The Barbury Castle Stables handler has earmarked the 1m 6f race, which is the feature race at Nottingham’s first fixture of 2022 on Wednesday 6th April, as a potential starting point for the dual Group One winner who made his debut at the course back in 2018.
Last season, Trueshan took his form to new heights, tasting Group One success in the Goodwood Cup and the Prix du Cadran at Paris-Longchamp before securing the Group Two British Champions Long Distance Cup at Ascot for the second year in succession.
King, who claimed the Further Flight Stakes back in 2011 with The Betchworth Kid, said: “If the ground is suitable, we will probably get Trueshan started at Nottingham. We will give him the entry and see what it is like, but it is certainly in the back of my mind.
“He has come to hand quite quickly and that’s why we are thinking of getting him out next week. He had two months out in a field after his last campaign but, touch wood, his preparation has gone well.
“I know this season he is standout horse in the division, but It is just great to have a horse like him in training. I just hope I don’t mess it up!”
Although King believed Trueshan would develop with age and time following his debut sixth at Nottingham in October 2018, he admits he has been taken back by the progress the Planteur gelding has made.
He added: “He only had the one run as a two year old which was right at the back end of the season at Nottingham but we always thought he was a likeable horse with a bit of ability.
“You're never sure how far they will go but he has just continued to progress the right way throughout his career.
“He has just seemed to improve with time and age. Hopefully there is still more to come.”
Looking back at last season King points to Trueshan’s victory in the Goodwood Cup, which was his first Group One winner, as the standout moment of a fine campaign.
He added: “I would say the Goodwood Cup would have to be the race for me as it was my first Group One.
“In France he did everything extremely well and did it in a way where he looked to have plenty in hand.
“On his last run at Ascot he was probably just past his best at that stage of the season, but he got away with it.
“The day at Goodwood was one I’ll never forget though.”
While King would like to have a tilt at the Group One Gold Cup at Royal Ascot with Trueshan, he insists he will only do so if the ground allows him to.
He concluded: “I would love to have a go at the Gold Cup, but we would need the rain.
“If the rain comes then he will run there as he needs the ground to be right for him.
“Last year we were lucky that it rained at Goodwood, in France and back at Ascot. I’m sure we will get our ground on one of those big days again.”