Trainer Jarlath Fahey is in no rush to commit to future targets with stable star Sea The Lion following his promising return to action at Leopardstown.
The Sea The Stars gelding has six victories to his credit and enjoyed a particularly profitable campaign in 2018, completing a hat-trick of wins in little over a month before finishing an excellent third in the Ebor at York.
The prestigious handicap was once again his big target last season, but he suffered a tendon injury when finishing down the field in the Silver Cup at York a month earlier and was forced to spend a year on the sidelines before his recent comeback.
Despite his advancing years, the nine-year-old proved at least some of his ability remains intact in finishing fourth in a qualified riders event under the trainer’s daughter – and Fahey hopes he can keep his charge in one piece for the remainder of the campaign.
He said: “We were very happy with the way he ran. The race popped up and it looked a nice place to start back without having to throw him into anything too competitive.
“It’s been a long road back and I suppose we were lucky in a way that racing was delayed this year and we could take our time with him.
“He had a good spin round the other day and hopefully he’ll improve from it.”
Asked whether the Ebor could again be on Sea The Lion’s radar, Fahey added: “”We’re not ruling anything in or out 100 per cent, but that wouldn’t be his main target as it’s a very competitive race – and while he ran well the other day, he’d need to step up a lot to be going for something like that.
“We’re just going to see how he is over the next week or 10 days and see where we go from there.
“We can pick and choose our way. His next run will tell us a lot more about where we are with him.”