Sheikh Hamdan to link up with Hannon

CHAMPION British trainer Richard Hannon has confirmed that Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum has joined his list of owners.

Hannon, who will almost certainly win back-to-back titles when the season ends in a few weeks, will receive “at least six” two-year-olds from the prominent owner.

“The boss asked me to approach Richard about having horses with him in 2012, and Peter and Ross Doyle have been buying for us at the recent bloodstock sales,” said Sheikh Hamdan‘s racing manager Angus Gold.

“We will be sending Richard at least six colts, which include sons of Acclamation and Shamardal. He has always been a fantastic trainer, and it is great to be on board.”

Hannon said: “Sheikh Hamdan is a lovely man and he always buys and breeds a quality horse, so obviously we are very pleased to have him join us.”

Meanwhile, connections have yet to decide on future plans for Excelebration following his courageous effort behind Frankel in Saturday’s Queen Elizabeth II Stakes.

The three-year-old came off second best against Henry Cecil’s unbeaten colt for the third time this season in the Qipco-sponsored Group One at Ascot, but pulled clear of another top-class performer in Immortal Verse.

He has a Group One in the bag having landed the Prix du Moulin at Longchamp in September and trainer Marco Botti will see how he performs in his homework over the next few weeks before deciding whether he will race again this season.

“He’s fine and seems to have taken the race very well. We were all very pleased with his performance,” said Botti.

“The owners are talking over the next few days to decide what to do with him now, but I would say the Breeders’ Cup is very unlikely. Hong Kong could be a possibility, but we will see how he trains over the next few weeks and then we will see.”

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox