Cox Plate placegetter Highland Reel could return to Australia after claiming his first European Group One win in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot.
The much-travelled four-year-old won the Secretariat Stakes in North America in August and the Hong Kong Vase after running third to Winx in the Cox Plate.
While the King George lost some of its gloss following the withdrawal of last year’s winner Postponed, the Aidan O’Brien-trained Highland Reel left punters smiling after he justified his position as the 13-8 market leader.
Ryan Moore took Highland Reel straight to front and he kicked strongly to beat Wings Of Desire by 1-1/4 lengths with The Queen’s Dartmouth another 2-3/4 lengths third.
“He is an amazing horse. He travels the world and loves racing. Physically, he is getting better and, mentally, he is a rock,” O’Brien said.
“He is a horse that can go anywhere from a mile and a quarter (2000m) to a mile and a half.
“If he is left in front, he is happy. If there is pace on, he is happy. He is a very unique horse, really.
“He can go to the Breeders’ Cup Turf, he can go to Australia, Hong Kong or Japan.
“He has got an awful lot of options.”
Options abroad may also be pursued by connections of the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Dartmouth with the 2016 Melbourne Cup high on his list.
“I’ve a notion that he might be an international traveller. He loves that fast ground so there is the Breeders’ Cup, Australia and Japan,” the monarch’s racing manager John Warren said.
“We will just freshen him up but he is in good hands. We will talk it through, and as long as The Queen is happy to travel with him and we will see where we go.
“The Queen is delighted.”