John Gosden has tentatively started to make summer plans for his stable stars.
The maestro of Clarehaven Stables admits it “won’t be easy” to better a wonderful 2019, which saw plenty of top-class winners and a fourth trainers’ championship.
“It is early days. We just started cantering on Warren Hill on Saturday morning,” he said.
“I have not exactly got eyes on targets. We will look at the early entries, and the older horses you won’t see until virtually June – the likes of Stradivarius and all of those.
“He will have a run in May, probably, as a prep for the Ascot Gold Cup – and as for the three-year-olds, I will be able to answer better about where they stand in about six weeks’ time. They are coming, they are coming.”
One of those who may be worth keeping an eye on is Waldkonig, who holds a Derby entry and looked set for a bright future when landing an extended one-mile novice event at Wolverhampton by nine lengths in December.
Waldkonig is currently a best-priced 20-1 with Paddy Power for the Derby, but Gosden intends to take things gently with the son of Kingman.
“Waldkonig is fine,” he said.
“He did two canters on Warren Hill. He is the type of horse I would like to run in a novice before going in at the deeper end. He has only run once – but he is a little green, and I’d love to get a novice into him.”
Gosden also had an update on Lord Tennyson, a four-year-old Godolphin-owned gelding who scooted up on his belated racecourse debut at Chelmsford three days ago.
“It did not look a strong race, but he did it very nicely. He was very ill and had two years off, but he will be all right,” he said.
“Placing him will be tough, but he is allowed to go in a novice and he might well go that route again.”