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Hit The Bid Takes Another Group 3 in The Mercury

On the first occasion that he got his ground since his return to action Hit The Bid showed his class again to take a competitive renewal of The Mercury Stakes (Group 3) at Dundalk tonight. He had run a blinder in the Group 1 Flying Five to be beaten only a length and a neck on unsuitable ground. Then after that the Group 1 Prix De L'Abbaye was a non event for him when the ground turned up soft but we had to run to give him a good blow and ensure he was right for this race. He bounced back here in no uncertain terms to record a comfortable victory under a great ride from Chris Hayes.

It was fantastic to win another Group 3 race for The Straight To Victory Syndicate who are the best of owners. A real pleasure to train for them and they are enjoying an amazing journey with this horse and have so much to look forward to. It's well deserved and hopefully they'll have many more great days.

I've no doubt we haven't seen the best of this horse yet. He's progressing all the time and strengthening into a stunning looking horse. In all my years in racing I've never come across a colt with a better temperament. He's in a great place in all respects and is incredibly consistent when the gets his ground over 5f. He has so much speed and I've yet to see a horse that can take him off the bridle. No matter how fast they go in a race he travels on the bridle.

We're looking at options in Dubai and Australia for the winter. He thrived in Dubai earlier this year and there are 3 races to suit him at the Carnival including the Group 2 Meydan Sprint.

In Australia there's the Lightning Stakes and Oakleigh Plate in Melbourne and The Galaxy in Sydney (all Group 1's) in addition to a couple of Group 2's. We'll make a decision during

the coming weeks on those. The early targets in Europe next season will include the Group 2 Temple Stakes at Haydock and the Group 1 King's Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot. He's a Group 1 horse and it's very exciting to look forward to taking on the best with such a talented and genuine performer.

My team at home have done a brilliant job as ever with this horse and many thanks to them for all their efforts. I was particularly happy to win the Mercury Stakes with it being

a race sponsored by Mr Al Basti. It was a real pleasure meeting him in Dubai and he's one of the great supporters of horse racing globally.

Many thanks to everyone who sent so many kind messages of congratulations and support. They are all very much appreciated.

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