Long Distance Cup: Eldar Eldarov may compete again this year, according to Roger Varian, and an appearance in the Long Distance Cup at Ascot is one possibility.
He won his lone race as a two-year-old at Nottingham, and he breezed through his season-opening appearance at Newcastle over a mile and a quarter to enter Royal Ascot unbeaten.
The three-year-old first distinguished himself over 14 furlongs at the summer spectacular, displaying all of his staying ability and a lightning-quick turn of foot to overtake Zechariah and win the Queen’s Vase.
Eldar Eldarov lost his unbeaten streak when he was shortened to a mile and a half for the Grand Prix de Paris, but his domineering victory in the Town Moor Group One at Doncaster, in the penultimate Classic of the season, established the strong appearance of that race.
He is said to have handled the strain of the Classic well, and Varian has suggested two options for the autumn: either increase the distance to two miles for the Long Distance Cup at Ascot on Qipco British Champions Day, or travel to Paris and stay at the one-mile-six distance for the Prix Royal-Oak a week later.
However, the Newmarket-based handler is already looking forward to next year when he will be trained to be a cup horse. “He’s in good form, he’s come out of the race very well,” said Varian.
“I wouldn’t rule it out [running again]. I have the option of running him again if I wanted to, he’s only raced four times this year and he had a nice break from the Grand Prix de Paris to the Leger.
“He’s only had five lifetime starts and he could run again and the two races to consider are the Long Distance Cup at Ascot or the Prix Royal-Oak at Longchamp. They are not until October and are a week apart, so he’s got plenty of time and we’ve got plenty of time to make a decision.
“There’s every chance and no reason to think he won’t [make into a cup horse]. His pedigree would suggest he will improve with age and he’s won twice now over a mile and three-quarters looking like he will be even better when he goes up to two miles.
“So we have to dream about him turning into a cup horse and see how things develop.”