Pastoral Pursuits retired to stud

Pastoral Pursuits, who provided Hughie Morrison with his first Group One success when landing the Darley July Cup, has been retired after suffering a minor leg injury.

Pastoral Pursuits, who provided Hughie Morrison with his first Group One success when landing the Darley July Cup, has been retired after suffering a minor leg injury.

Morrison's four-year-old has not raced since seeing off Avonbridge by a length and a half in the premier sprint at Newmarket earlier this month, and will now head for a career at the National Stud.

"He has had a minor injury to his leg and sadly has had to be retired," said Morrison.

"Given the limited options for him, we were going to struggle to get him ready for the main targets, which were the Prix Maurice de Gheest and the Sprint Cup at Haydock.

"He needed some rest to recover from the injury and there isn't enough time to have him ready for the races we had in mind.

"We are very disappointed but we achieved our main objective and I would like to think that the July Cup is the most prestigious European sprint, and it is certainly the most valuable.

"To my mind he won the race pretty easily, and would have improved for the run as well.

"This won't affect his stud career at all, and it could be beneficial in some ways as he will be able to go there and let down and fill out properly before he starts covering mares in February."

Pastoral Pursuits was bought by the National Stud last year and only had the two starts in 2005, and made his seasonal bow when seventh in the Queen Anne Stakes at the Royal meeting.

Having won or been placed in eight of his 10 starts, Pastoral Pursuits won the Group Two Park Stakes last year and notched up a hat-trick as a juvenile including the Sirenia Stakes at Kempton Park.

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer