Solzhenitsyn Needs it Dry in 2013 Lord Mayor’s Cup

Group 1 winner Solzhenitsyn is likely to start as favourite in Saturday’s Group 3 2013 Lord Mayor’s Cup (1600m) at Doomben but only if the weather allows.

Solzhenitsyn is unlikely to run if the track is wet on Saturday. Photo: Steve Hart.

The rain that turned the opening day of the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival into a swamp at Eagle Farm on Saturday has continued early this week and if it doesn’t stop the six-year-old is likely to be left for a drier day.

The Robert Heathcote-trained galloper failed to keep up with a stablemate Fire Up Fifi in trackwork this morning, confirming his trainer’s thoughts that he is no mudlark.

“I would have no hesitation in scratching him if it was heavy,” Heathcote told News Limited.

“The forecast is actually pretty good, but we didn’t want to be waking up to this [rain] this morning.”

Heathcote said he has come to terms with his blunder whereby he missed the deadline for Doomben Cup first acceptances, Solzhenitsyn’s original winter goal.

The leading Queensland trainer is now setting his sights on the Stradbroke Handicap with the winner of 11 of 29 starts and more than $640,000 in prizemoney.

Saturday’s Lord Mayor’s Cup, a weight-for-age event offering $115,000 in prizemoney, may only be a Group 3 but it has attracted a star-studded nominations list.

Joining Solzhenitsyn in the entries are Chris Waller’s veteran pair of Group 1 winners Rangirangdoo and Danleigh as well as Patinack’s in-form four-year-old Transporter.

Patinack’s Transporter was another to miss the Doomben Cup acceptances. Transporter has won two of his past three starts and finished just a half-length off Lights Of Heaven in the Group 2 Hollindale Stakes on May 4.

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