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Royal Ascot Not in Telescope's Sights

Telescope will not make an appearance at Ascot 2013, Sir Michael Stoute deciding to keep him back for later in the season. Greatwood is now set to be Highclere Thoroughbred Racing's only representative at the Royal meeting.

© Racehorse Photos

Neither of the colts took part in last weekend's Investec Derby as Telescope, who has not appeared since September, had required treatment for grazed legs and was unimpressive in a pre-Epsom workout at Lingfield.

Stoute ruled him out of the Derby with a sore shin, while the Luca Cumani-trained Greatwood was disappointing when only seventh to Derby runner-up Libertarian in the Dante Stakes at York.

Highclere's managing director Harry Herbert saw both horses in Newmarket on Wednesday morning and said: "Telescope is absolutely fine, he's 100% but Sir Michael wants to back off him now.

"He doesn't want to rush him to Royal Ascot so he's not going for the King Edward VII Stakes and to be honest, there's no immediate plan.

"After the problems before the Derby, he feels it's time to regroup and it's his intention to bring him back for a late-summer and autumn campaign and towards next season as well.

"I'm not sure what Sir Michael will look at, I suppose the Great Voltigeur Stakes has to be a likely target for him, whether he would run before then, the horse will tell him. He's still an exciting horse for us."

Of Greatwood, Herbert said: "All being well, he'll run in the King Edward VII.

"I saw him and he looked in great shape. Luca said he worked very well on Saturday, as well as he has ever done."

Jockey Sam Hitchcott described the Mick Channon-trained Ambiance as Royal Ascot material "without a shadow of a doubt" after he ran out a ready winner of the British Stallion Studs Supporting British Racing EBF Maiden Stakes at Ripon on June 4.

Hitchcott said: "He's improved massively for his (debut) run at Newbury and we've probably hit the front a bit sooner than we'd have liked, but he's very smart. He travelled superbly and put the race to bed in three or four strides - he showed a really good turn of foot."

Pearl Secret
© Racehorse Photos

Pearl Secret
Trainer David Barron admits star sprinter Pearl Secret could be forced to make his seasonal reappearance at Royal Ascot.

The talented chestnut extended his unbeaten record to four when winning his first three starts last season, and was not disgraced when finishing ninth on his final outing of the year in the Nunthorpe at York.

Pearl Secret has yet to reappear as four-year-old, having missed engagements on account of fast ground, and will not be taking up his Listed entry at Haydock on June 7.

Barron told At The Races: "We're going to have to run him somewhere. We're going to stay at home forever if we're not careful.

"It's a big ask to go to Ascot first time, but that's where he might end up going."

© Racehorse Photos

Mark Johnston is favouring a crack at the Tercentenary Stakes over the King Edward VII Stakes for Windhoek.

The previously unbeaten colt finished only fifth in the Dante at York behind subsequent Derby runner-up Libertarian, with the Middleham handler believing his charge was beaten for a lack of stamina.

"The Dante has worked out a very good race now but the reason we didn't run him at Epsom was because it looked like he didn't get home in the Dante," Johnston told At The Races.

"He looked to be travelling better than anything with two furlongs to go so I'm fairly certain he won't run in the King Edward VII, he'll come back in trip for the Tercentenary Stakes."

Another likely to miss the King Edward VII is Mister Impatience, who is now set to step up in trip following his second to subsequent Derby winner Ruler Of The World at Chester.

"Mister Impatience will have several options of which the King Edward VII will be one of the less likely ones," said Johnston.

"He'll be in the King George V Handicap but also in the Queen's Vase. I like to have the three-year-old middle-distance horses in the Queen's Vase and that would be favourite at this stage."

Universal, winner of the John Porter at Newbury and the Jockey Club Stakes at Newmarket this season, may miss the big meeting, however, with a trip to France for the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud his alternative.

"The Hardwicke would be the favourite if we take him to Royal Ascot but he's got several Group One entries around the world, including one in France within a few days of Ascot, so we'll make that decision nearer the time," said Johnston.

"He's very exciting, I half wished we'd supplemented him for the Coronation Cup, although St Nicholas Abbey was very impressive, but I think he deserves a crack at a Group One."

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