Gulfstream via the Grand Duchy: Toast Of New York sets out on Pegasus venture
When you think of a transatlantic flight stopover, Luxembourg is probably low on the list, but the Grand Duchy will have a special visitor later this week when Toast Of New York drops in en route to the Pegasus World Cup in Florida.
The seven-year-old's remarkable return to action when winning at Lingfield last month, following a three-year absence, has fuelled the dream the horse can not only compete, but be a live contender in the world's richest race at Gulfstream Park on January 27.
Prior to his Lingfield return, Toast Of New York's last start was his agonising nose defeat to Bayern in the 2014 Breeders' Cup Classic. Now connections are ready to start another American fairytale.
"He leaves Lambourn tomorrow," Jamie Osborne said on Tuesday. "He flies out of Luxembourg on Thursday morning. He's done it before, that's where cargo planes going to the States go out of. When we went to Del Mar we had to do the same. It's a tested route.
"Although he hasn't done it for a while, he's done it several times before."
Osborne reported Toast Of New York to be in good form, having completed a little breeze on Tuesday morning, and the horse will stretch his legs again Wednesday morning before jetting off.
Flying groom Brian Taylor, who accompanied Toast Of New York on his previous international trips and Osborne's right-hand man Jimmy McCarthy will be accompanying the horse on his journey, and Osborne added: "He'll land in Florida and spend 48 hours in quarantine, and he'll then transfer to Gulfstream on Sunday and all being well be cantering on the track on Monday morning."
Osborne, who will join his stable star next Tuesday, is pleased with how preparations have gone. He said: "So far I've just been concentrating on making sure the horse gets on the plane in the best condition he can be and I'm very happy that his preparation has gone exactly as we would have hoped.
"I've now got the rest of the time between now and then to start thinking about how we're going to beat the opposition. It's another adventure, we've had these with Toast before and it's nice to be having another one."
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