Historically, the lightening quick Battaash has not been the best-behaved horse on a race day.
But it is what happens once the starting stalls have flown open that counts, and this mercurial but exceptionally talented horse has lit up Britain’s most hotly contested sprints over the past four seasons.
Happily, he is back for more in 2020, and trainer Charlie Hills will be hoping that the horse can continue to build upon the maturity that he finally appeared to have developed by mid-2019.
A more settled approach to the preliminaries worked wonders for Battaash.
At “Glorious” Goodwood, he showed blistering speed when clocking in at a monstrous 48.63mph during the second furlong of the five-furlong Group 2 King George Stakes.
A figure that equates to a quarter of the maximum speed of a Lamborghini Gallardo and three-tenths as quick as a military helicopter at full pelt.
Next time up at York, Battaash stopped the clock at an astonishing 55.9 seconds in the five-furlong Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes. The sub-56 seconds time smashed the previous course record of 56.16 seconds, which had stood firm since 1990.