After originally nominated for a trio of his spring carnival hopefuls, leading Melbourne trainer Peter Moody will have just one runner in Saturday’s P.B. Lawrence Stakes 2013 field with High Esteem his sole representative in the Caulfield feature.
When nominations were first taken for the $220,000 Group 3 Back to Caulfield P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) Moody put in an entry for High Esteem, French import Kesampour and Italian expat Sneak A Peek.
After extended entries closed on Tuesday however the horseman was down to just his best chance in Redoute’s Choice stallion High Esteem.
Moody’s duo of Lawrence Stakes defectors are both owned by Graham and Linda Hubby and will resume racing in separate events over the coming weeks.
For Kesampour who is yet to race down under Moody is even considering racing them first-up in Group 1 company in the newly upgraded $350,000 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on September 9.
“I might even wait for the mile of the Makybe in three weeks,” Moody told Racing Victoria.
“I just think at 1400 he’ll find them a bit sharp at this point.”
King’s Best four-year-old Kesampour had their last start back in their native France in October when failing to handle a Heavy track at Longchamp beaten 20 lengths crossing 13th in the Group 1 Prix de L’Arc Triomphe (2400m).
Despite that failure the bookies are rating them a top chance for Moody to break his maiden status in this year’s Caulfield Cup with the galloper paying $31.
They are also a chance for the $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) on the first Tuesday of November.
As for Doyen stallion Sneak A Peak, last seen running a credible eighth in the Caulfield Cup last October, Moody is looking at a Sydney kick-off in Saturday week’s $175,000 Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m).
“I’ll probably take him to Sydney for the Warwick Stakes on Saturday week,” he said.
“I just thought he was probably another gallop away. He’s pleased with the way he’s come up, but he hasn’t had a run since the Caulfield Cup last year.”
While it’s shaping up as a crack Lawrence Stakes field this year thanks the inclusion of resuming Melbourne Cup favourite Puissance De Lune, Moody is confident in his up-and-comer.
“He’s prepped up well and I think seven (furlongs) around Caulfield will suit him nicely,” Moody said.
“I think that 1400 to 2000-metre bracket is ideal for him.”
High Esteem makes their four-year-old debut on Saturday at Caulfield following their sensational autumn campaign.
The then three-year-old posted three straight wins to take their career record to four victories from nine starts.
They progressed from a mile win at Sale to a three length effort over 1700m at Caulfield in an Inglis Bonus handicap.
They were last seen scoring a black type win in South Australia on April 13 when beating home Road Trippin’ in the Listed Adelaide Guineas (1800m) at Morphettville.
Moody has a high opinion of High Esteem and believes they could develop into a Group 1 horse this season.
They’ve been nominated for both the $2.5 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 19 and the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) a week later at Moonee Valley.
Their early runs this campaign will help guide which race Moody opts to run them in, High Esteem currently paying $101 and $151 in the respective futures markets on the two spring majors.
The 2013 PB Lawrence Stakes final field is due out on Wednesday and will be published right here at Races.com.au.
In the meantime why not place a sneaky dollar or two on High Esteem in the spring Group 1’s just in case!
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