Pritchard-Gordon's Mornington stable is buzzing this season and his team has
received another fillip with the addition of French Group 1 winner Mutual
Mutual Trust (4c Cacique - Posteritas by Lear Fan) is a Juddmonte Farm homebred and Pritchard-Gordon's family has a long and successful association with Prince Khalid Abdullah. Sam's father Grant is a former racing manager for Juddmonte Farms.
Swettenham Stud owner Adam Sangster and Pritchard-Gordon have combined to purchase Mutual Trust from Juddmonte. He arrives here as a Group 1 winner of last year's Prix Jean Prat (1600m) at Chantilly.
Mutual Trust(GB) was initially trained by Andre Fabre and his rise to the elite level was meteoric. He won first time out at Chantilly and doubled up at Saint-Cloud before climbing to a G3 victory in the Prix Paul De Moussac (1600m).
A coveted Group 1 was next on the agenda and Mutual Trust did it in style defeating Coolmore colt Zoffany in the Prix Jean Prat just two months after his debut! A fortnight beforehand, Zoffany had finished a three-quarter length second to Juddmonte superstar Frankel in the G1 St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Juddmonte transferred Mutual Trust to North America but it became apparent quite quickly that he didn't adapt to their racing conditions. A contingency plan to send him back to Fabre failed due to the strict blood tests back to France.
Grant Pritchard Gordon managed to broker a very good deal for his son and Sangster. "I saw Mutual Trust working at the Juddmonte training track and there's a lot of Danehill about him both in substance and temperament," Grant said. "He's a very strong individual and I sincerely believe it's a good gamble taking him to Australia."
Sam Pritchard-Gordon(pictured) trains on a five acre property that backs on to Mornington racecourse. It's a calming and relaxing place where older horses thrive and his training methods reflect that, too.
He believes the additional use of swimming at Balnarring Beach combined with a more European style of developing a significant base-level of fitness has its advantages when getting imports to rise to the top.
Pritchard-Gordon finished the 2011-12 season with the best winning strike rate (31%) among trainers in Victoria. Top of the dial is his imported galloper Buxted who won the Listed JRA Trophy at Moonee Valley last month.
"I'm keen to start the ball rolling with Mutual Trust and the timing is ideal for an autumn preparation," Sam said. "He has high-cruising speed coupled with an endurance capacity to withstand a long sustained run that is so typical of French racing.
"Those characteristics define the best 2000m horses in Australia. There are a few options for Mutual Trust including a traditional weight-for-age route to the Australian Cup (2000m) via the C F Orr Stakes (1400m) or Futurity Stakes(1600m).
"Alternatively, a softly-softly approach would have him heading towards theQueen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick before targeting the Doomben Cup(2000m).
"And why couldn't he measure up to a Cox Plate in twelve months?" Pritchard Gordon said. "Mutual Trust is very exciting and his profile indicates he should thrive over 2000m in Australia."
His sire Cacique was a G2 winner at Chantilly before crossing the Atlantic to capture the G1 Man O' War Stakes and G1 Manhattan Hcp in New York. He is a Danehill brother to Champion sire Dansili and fellow Juddmonte bred G1 winners Banks Hill, Champs Elysees and Intercontinental.
The bottom-half of Mutual Trust's pedigree is all quality. He's from English stakes winner Posteritas and she is a daughter of Imroz (Nureyev) who won twice at two and was later G3 placed at Santa Anita. Her second-dam All At Sea (Riverman) was a G1 winner of the Prix du Moulin at Longchamp.
Mutual Trust is still an entire but, first and foremost, he's a racing prospect. Pritchard-Gordon will put him into training at Mornington in early December.
News from Swettenham Stud