Trainer Freddy Head eyes Royal Ascot for Call The Wind after his high-class stayer returns to action with battling victory at Deauville
- High-class stayer returned to action with victory at Deauville on Sunday
- The six-year-old had last been seen winning in Saudi Arabia in February
- Head will consider options for Call The Wind including the Gold Cup
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Trainer Freddy Head will consider options for Call The Wind that could include the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot after his high-class stayer returned to action with victory at Deauville on Sunday.
The six-year-old had last been seen winning a hugely valuable handicap in Saudi Arabia in February, after which he was an intended runner in Dubai, only for the World Cup meeting to be cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A small but select field was assembled for the Group Three Prix de Barbeville over a mile and seven furlongs, with the George Strawbridge-owned gelding sent off at odds on to reverse Prix du Cadran form with Holdthaisgreen.
Freddy Head will consider options for Call The Wind, including the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot
Holdthaisgreen led at just a sedate gallop and it ultimately turned into a sprint from over two out, with Call The Wind doing enough under Olivier Peslier to hold sway by a short neck, as only a couple of lengths covering the five runners.
Head said: ‘I was very pleased. There was no pace and they sprinted – you can’t do much when the pace is so slow and they went very slow, but he fought well. Olivier said he was very well after the race.
‘There’s a Group Two at Deauville in three weeks or we can go to Ascot if we are allowed to, I don’t know. We’ll have to discuss it and see – will there be a quarantine, I don’t know, it is funny this year. We could go, it is something we will look at maybe.
‘We’ll see how he is and discuss with George Strawbridge what we do.’
Head has another smart performer in the Strawbridge colours in the shape of Another Sky, who lost his unbeaten record at ParisLongchamp earlier this month but is still held in high regard and seen as a Classic candidate.
The Chantilly trainer said of his twice-raced half-brother to Almanzor: ‘There was a horse that pushed us all the way (in front) and he wasn’t ready for a race like that, there were Group One racers in there. We’ll see a different horse next time, I still like him a lot.
‘He is in a Group Three and then I hope so (go to Prix du Jockey Club). We will see what he does.’
Head also had news of his filly Khayzaraan, who dropped out tamely on her highly-anticipated ParisLongchamp reappearance, having raced at the head of affairs in the Prix de la Grotte.
He said: ‘I’m not sure what I am going to do with Khayzaraan, go sprinting or stay at a mile. She’s very well after her race, but she is not easy, she always does a bit much. You have to be 100 per cent ready to do that and I thought she needed the race.
‘Her sister was a sprinter, so I don’t know. She got a mile at two, but it is a bit different at three.’