Roger Teal is excited to see how his star sprinter Oxted performs over five furlongs in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot next month.
Last season’s July Cup hero has failed to add to his tally so far this term, but has performed with credit to be placed in the Abernant Stakes at Newmarket and the Duke of York on the Knavesmire.
While the son of Mayson has been campaigned almost exclusively over six furlongs, Teal feels the time is right to test Oxted over the minimum distance for the first time.
The shortest race he has contested so far was the five-and-a-half-furlong Portland Stakes at Doncaster, which he won in 2019.
“He’s worked on the grass this morning and I was very happy with him, so all roads lead to Ascot at the moment,” said Teal on Tuesday.
“We’re going to drop back to five (furlongs). I think he’s just been racing a bit aggressively and we’re going to take a step back. Whether it’s the right thing to do or wrong thing to do, we’ll find out at Ascot.
“It will be interesting to try it. It’s a stiff five at Ascot, so if you’re going to try it anywhere, that’s the place to do it.
“These sprinters live on their nerves a bit and when he gets to the races, he gets a bit more fired up.
“He’s been a bit on it on his last couple of runs, so we’ll see how he goes over five.”