Barney Roy wins the G1 Jebel Hatta at Meydan in March (Image: @Godolphin)
Barney Roy, one of Godolphin's best performed older horses, booked his ticket to Australia for this year's Melbourne Spring Carnival with a hard-fought Group 1 victory in Germany on Sunday.
Barney Roy ($2 favourite) claimed the €77,500 (A$125,000) Grosser Dallmayr-Preis (2000m) at Munich with a neck to spare over multiple German-trained Group winner Quest The Moon ($8.50).
The son of Excelebration resented the rain-softened good track conditions with winning jockey William Buick hailing Barney Roy's 'courage and ability' as 'allowing him to win the race'.
"He is a high-class horse," Buick said. "It was a very tough race. We thought beforehand that the German horses set a good standard and they were at home.
"When the rain came this morning, we were a little concerned for Barney Roy because all of his best form is on fast ground. I thought he struggled on the ground from a long way out.
“We thought that there would be a good pace and Barney Roy jumped a little slow from the gates. We were probably positioned one place further back than I wanted to be but he was comfortable and relaxed.
"I followed Quest The Moon and I knew that he would take me into the race nicely, so I got a good lead from him.”
WATCH: 2020 Grosser Dallmayr-Preis
The victory provided Barney Roy with his seventh win from 14 starts. Three of those wins have been at Group 1 level, headlined by his victory in the 2017 St. James's Palace Stakes (1603m) as a three-year-old.
That victory during Royal Ascot 2017 for trainer Richard Hannon secured him a place on Darley Stud's roster at Newmarket but his stint as prized stallion was short-lived due to fertility issues.
Barney Roy was gelded and returned to training with Charlie Appleby last year who has been able to win four stakes races from seven starts across three countries – France, United Arab Emirates and Germany.
Appleby intended to take Barney Roy to Australia for last year's Melbourne Spring Carnival but those plans were derailed by an untimely setback.
However, Barney Roy appears firmly on track for the $5 million Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) at The Valley on October 24. The past two Grosser Dallmayr-Preis winners Benbatl (second in 2018) and Danceteria (last in 2019) also contested Australasia's weight-for-age championship later in the year.
Barney Roy's third-placed effort in the £250,000 Group 1 Prince of Wales's Stakes (2004m) at Royal Ascot last month had Appleby again contemplating an end-of-year Australian trip and that remains highly likely following success in Germany.
"Going forward, we are probably going to have a look at campaigning him in Australia now," Appleby said.