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Happy Trails is headed for Hong Kong after being beaten by the slow tempo in his 30th Group One race in Australia.

A tweet in the eight-year-old’s name had suggested Saturday’s Australian Cup at Flemington could be part of his farewell tour.

But trainer Paul Beshara said he would let the horse do the talking after he finished seventh in the $1.5 million weight-for-age race.

“He’ll tell us when he’s ready,” Beshara told AAP.

Beshara was happy with Happy Trails’ performance with Dwayne Dunn on board in a race won on protest by Preferment at the expense of outsider Awesome Rock.

“Considering the tempo of the race it was actually a great run,” Beshara said.

“They crawled. They went too slow.”

A trip to Hong Kong to contest the QEII Cup late next month remains the plan for Happy Trails with Beshara ruling out a trip to Sydney beforehand.

“We’ll go to Hong Kong.

“Dwayne was very happy with him. He said the tempo beat us so we’ll let it go at that.”

On previous trips to Sydney during the autumn, Happy Trails’ chances have been thwarted by wet tracks.

Happy Trails has been absent from the winner’s stall for 16 months since his 2014 Group One Mackinnon Stakes victory over the 2000m at Flemington.

 
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