Telecaster bounces back in style on French mission for Hughie Morrison setting up big race targets for rest of seasonJune 25, 2020
AN ambitious trip to France paid off in style for trainer Hughie Morrison as his Telecaster romped to victory in the Group 3 La Coupe at Longchamp.
Last year's Dante winner lost his way after the Derby, but could now be back in the big time and connections are keen to test the Group 1 waters again.
You had to be up early to see him bounce back – the card at Longchamp got underway at 8.40 due to the heat-wave in France.
And with a pair of Charlie Appleby runners later on the card, they were the first horses to make the most of the eased lockdown restrictions that have been in place.
But despite the heat, Morrison had little reason to sweat as stand-in jockey Christophe Soumillon was always in control just behind the leaders and he kicked clear in taking fashion up the straight.
Telecaster had shown signs of promise in the re-arranged Brigadier Gerard at Haydock – won by Lord North – that a comeback was around the corner, and that was built on in some style.
Morrison told Sun Racing: "We got it spot on there, it was a bit of a relief really. It's always nice when you go all the way across with a fancied horse.
"We just managed to beat the Godolphin horses to the winners' enclosure that went over too which doesn't happen very often!
"It's good to see him back up his Haydock run, and he's put two good efforts together now. If the Brigadier Gerard had been run at a better gallop you may have seen a different result.
"We're very happy with how it's all worked out though. It's better we've done this than going to Ascot which have been too much too soon again."
A step up in class awaits now and after travelling across to France well, it has opened up more options for horse and trainer.
Morrison added: "There's a Group 2 at York (The York Stakes) at the end of July or we could go to Ireland for the Group 1, the Tattersalls Gold Cup.
"But it's always interesting taking on the Irish wherever you are. Perhaps a couple of spoilers and pacemakers…
"The Dante last year was a top-class race and if we'd had lockdown last year on May 20 he would have probably been the top three-year-old in Europe.
"And with the Haydock run working out well with Lord North he's definitely better than a Group 3 horse, we know that.
"I spoke with Christophe Soumillon after the race and he thinks he could get a mile-and-a-half too."
Despite an up and down career since his Dante win, Morrison has never been tempted to geld his horse with a stallion career awaiting post-retirement.
Morrison continued: "I think I'd be in trouble with the owners for suggesting that. He's got a stallion pedigree and he'll find a job somewhere, it's just a question what sort of stallion he may be.
"But at the very least we now know are l'Arc de Triomphe money wasn't wasted anyhow.
"There's no money around in the racing this season so we may as well aim high and that dream is still alive for now!"
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