Pinatubo team wait on weekend workout | Racing News

Charlie Appleby will make a choice after watching Pinatubo just work at the weekend regarding his participation in the Qatar Prix Jean Prat at Deauville.

The Newmarket handler is leaning towards the seven-furlong Group One on Sunday week as the next target for last year’s champion two-year-old, who has met with defeat in both of his starts this season.

Having finished third on his begin over a mile in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket, the Sharmardal colt subsequently found only Palace Pier too strong in the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot.

With Appleby reporting Pinatubo to have leave his race at the Royal meeting in good fashion, a visit to France is on the agenda.

Appleby said: “Pinatubo did an easy piece of content on Wednesday and which was his first piece of work right back. The piece of content was nothing strong, however it pleased us. We have a target that is the Prix Jean Prat, but it isn’t rubber-stamped yet.

“He will do still another piece of work within the weekend and we’ll make our decision then. So far the post-race signs after Ascot have now been good.

“If he has pleased us and everything is going well, we will drop him back to seven for the Prix Jean Prat.”

Although Pinatubo has been beaten for the very first time in his career, Appleby believes there are numerous positives to obtain of his efforts.

He said: “He definitely came forward a little more from the Guineas to St James’s Palace Stakes, which we’d hoped he’d.

“I know he has been beaten in both the St James’s Palace Stakes and 2000 Guineas, but what he showed us is that he has great courage.

“William (Buick) said he showed great guts to keep going in the St James’s Palace. The extra furlong just caught him out at Ascot last time having travelled so well, but what he showed us was determination and that he is a great battler.”

Despite Pinatubo being arranged for a drop in trip, the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland in November is just a potential end-of-season target.

Appleby said: “You can see how strongly that he travels through his races, so dropping back to seven doesn’t worry me at all.

“I’m not saying that he wont get a mile in time. What we could potentially work right back from may be the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland.

“The two-turn mile around there could really suit him.”

The Qatar Lennox Stakes at Goodwood remains the target for Space Blues. However, Appleby has not eliminated running the Dubawi colt in the Darley July Cup at Newmarket next Saturday if conditions are suitable.

He said: “Ultimately the Lennox is the aim, as we know very well what he can do over seven furlongs, but we might go through the July Cup.

“We know he is a much better horse with cut in the ground, so we wouldn’t want to be dropping back on a sounder surface.

“If the conditions changed the July Cup would be worth looking at. We always had it on our mind he would be a sprinter this year.”

Barney Roy looks set to produce his next appearance abroad, with Appleby weighing up options in France and Germany for Excelebration gelding, who finished third last time out in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at the Royal meeting.

He said: “We are looking at either the Prix D’Ispahan over nine furlongs at Chantilly or the Bayerisches Zuchtrennan over a mile and a quarter at Munich.

“He pulled up out of his last run well. I was pleased with the run and he set up a solid performance.

“The plan after this will be to give him a break and then look at going for some international races later in the year.”