Bucanero Fuerte is set to be campaigned at Group One level following his battling success in the Railway Stakes at the Curragh.
An impressive winner at the Kildare venue on debut, connections kept their powder dry with the precocious son of Wootton Bassett until Royal Ascot, where the Adrian Murray-trained youngster ran a fine race in the Coventry Stakes to finish a gallant third to Aidan O’Brien’s River Tiber.
Sent off 100-30 for the Group Two Railway, he built on that Ascot effort to quickly gain compensation, producing a brave performance off a positive ride from Rossa Ryan to hold off Ballydoyle’s Unquestionable and His Majesty.
The victory continued a golden spell for owners Amo Racing who enjoyed a double at Royal Ascot and also for Westmeath handler Murray who was picking up his second Group Two prize in the space of two weeks following Valiant Force’s Norfolk Stakes success at the big summer showpiece.
“Bucanero Fuerte has come out of the Curragh in great form and the team out in Ireland are really happy with him,” said Tom Pennington, racing and operations manager for Amo Racing.
“We were delighted with what he did there and he came forward from his Ascot run so we have to be chuffed with that.
“We’ve always held him in high regard and it’s nice it has come to fruition. We looked after him through the early part of the spring and he’s coming to the boil nicely now which is good to see.”
With Group Two honours secured, the natural next step is to seek top-table glory and both the Keeneland Phoenix Stakes (August 12) and Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes (September 10) back at the Curragh will come under consideration, as will Deauville’s Prix Morny on August 20.
“He’s got all the options. He’s in the Phoenix Stakes, he’s in the National and we’ll put him in the Morny,” added Pennington.
“We can’t wait to see him up at seven furlongs, but he showed at the Curragh he’s not slow. It will be a Group One on his next start, we just need to decide which one we go for.
“We would like to run in the Phoenix Stakes, that would be very much on our agenda and the National Stakes. They are the races we want to be competing in and he’s shown that he’s up to that level.”