Trainer Hughie Morrison targets Royal Ascot winner Quickthorn at York’s Silver Cup

Hughie Morrison is eyeing the John Smith’s Silver Cup at York on Saturday for his impressive Royal Ascot winner Quickthorn.

Having just the sixth run of his career the four-year-old justified 7-2 favouritism in the Duke of Edinburgh Handicap.

Now rated 103, Morrison hopes he has a new stable star on his hands.

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“As long as we don’t have any issues I think he’s a proper horse,” he said.

“If you watch him go up the gallops like I do most mornings, he has the most wonderful stride on him. You could imagine him hopping over Becher’s Brook and going round Badminton or Burghley – he’s one of those types.

“We’d like to run him on better ground so he might go to York for the Group Three over a mile and six furlongs.

“I think a little bit of cut helps because he’s strong and it doesn’t stop him.”

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When asked if one day Quickthorn might go hurdling like stablemate Not So Sleepy Morrison said with a smile: “I think we’ll probably keep him to the Flat!”

Another horse which could be heading to York later in the season is impressive Coral-Eclipse winner St Mark’s Basilica. The French Derby winner ensured a race that was light on numbers did not lack for star power as he put up a hugely impressive display to beat top-class older horses Addeybb and Mishriff at Sandown.

Just four horses went to post in the 10-furlong feature, but the race provided an electric performance with St Mark’s Basilica turning on the afterburners in the final furlong to give trainer Aidan O’Brien a joint-record sixth Eclipse triumph.

Asked about targets, the Ballydoyle trainer said: “The lads (Coolmore owners) will decide what they want to do, obviously he’d have options of maybe going to York (Juddmonte International) or Leopardstown (Irish Champion Stakes).”

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Broome rounded out a fine weekend for the O’Brien team when registering his first Group One success in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud at the French venue on Sunday.

Malton handler Brian Ellison saw Tashkhan claim a second win at Haydock this season with a decisive display in the £100,000 bet365 Handicap on Saturday.