Victorian trainer Mick Price has withdrawn Show A Heart five-year-old Heart Of Dreams from Saturday’s Doomben Cup, with odds on the remaining hopefuls firming with the announcement.
Heart Of Dreams has suffered no injury, but Price noticed signs that the gelding was coming to the end of his prep and has decided to give them a break in the spelling paddock.
“He’s fine but I just felt he had lightened off too much following the Hollindale Stakes,” Price said.
Having finished a brave third to Hay List in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) at Randwick last month before their strong last-start effort when beaten less than a length by Doomben Cup favourite My Kingdom Of Fife in the Group 2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast, Heart Of Dreams had plenty of admires in the Cup odds.
“There’s too much improvement in some of the others in the Doomben Cup and not enough in my bloke,” Price continued.
“The quicker I can spell him, the quicker I’ll get him back for the spring and races like the Underwood Stakes.”
The Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) runs at Caulfield in mid-September during the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival.
The second Group 1 feature of the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival, the $500,000 Doomben Cup (2020m) markets are topped by leading European imports Glass Harmonium and My Kingdom Of Fife who ran one-two in the Hollindale.
Undefeated in Australia to date, the Chris Waller-trained My Kingdom Of Fife showed they were ready to maintain their flawless record on our shores with a solid workout at the course proper on the Gold Coast this morning.
“He worked pretty well and we were able to use the course proper at the Gold Coast which is a great surface to work on,” Waller told Sky Sports Radio.
“He hit the line strongly without being asked for too much of an effort and most importantly he pulled up well.
“He is absolutely thriving and I guess that is the key to his success.”
The six-year-old is already an elite level winner this season after their win in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick two starts back and Waller is hoping to add another on Saturday.
“There will be no excuses (in the Doomben Cup) and I am quite looking forward to getting him onto a better track,” Waller said.
“We know he handles a slow and heavy track but Nash (Rawiller) said he was not entirely happy on the Gold Coast track last start.”
Waller also has rising seven-year-old Triple Honour set to start in the Doomben Cup, the Honour’s List gelding having run a very close second to stablemate Metal Bender in the event last year.
Sitting as a $14 chance in the current Doomben Cup markets, Triple Honour most recently ran sixth in the Hollindale Stakes.
“I am looking straight through his last two runs,” Waller said of Triple Honour who before the Hollindale was dead last in the All Aged Stakes.
“He loomed up to win the Hollindale, but did not quite finish it off and Jim Cassidy assured me that he was not happy in those conditions, so we are hoping for a better track from him.”
Of second favourite in the Doomben Cup odds, Glass Harmonium, trainer Michael Moroney has confirmed Saturday will be their final run before being spelled ahead of the spring.
“He seems to have trained on the right way and he had a nice gallop this morning on a pretty wet course proper, but he went round quite well,” Moroney said.
“Being a stallion still he has taken a bit of work and I think he is not quite at his peak fitness yet, but he is not far away.”
Other top Doomben Cup hopefuls include Gold Coast galloper Shoot Out, Perth warhorse Scenic Shot and Queensland Derby favourite Shootoff.
Graeme Rogerson’s Duelled gelding Shootoff is seeking their third straight win having won the Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m) at Randwick on April 23 and the Listed Lord Mayor’s Cup (1900m) at Canterbury on May 7 and is reportedly in top form.
“He has done really well since his last win and will go up (to Queensland) late in the week and the plan is to bring him back home to Sydney after the race,” Rogerson’s Sydney foreman Roger Elliott said on Monday.
“He won’t race again before the Derby and will have the three weeks off between the Doomben Cup and then.”
Final acceptances for the feature will be taken on Wednesday.