Confirming on Monday she would not take her place in the Group 2 Silver Shadow Stakes (1200m) first-up on August 23rd, trainer John Hawkes has revealed Golden Slipper champion Mossfun may be weeks away from a spring racing return after being struck down with a virus.
A standout performer over the 2014 Autumn Carnival, Mossfun finished second to Blue Diamond champion Earthquake in the Group 2 Reisling Stakes (1200m) on March 22nd, but responded in the best way possible when charging home to beat the Exceed And Excel filly by close to one length in the major Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) last time out on April 5th.
With a third meeting between the pair initially slated for the Silver Shadow Stakes, Hawkes told The Daily Telegraph that while not severe, Mossfun’s illness has led to a couple of light weeks of training and a delayed return to racing.
“It’s a shame it’s happened but better it’s happened now than late September, early October,” Hawkes said.
“We’ll give her the time to get over it and then look towards later in the spring.”
Debuting with a strong win in the Inglis Nursery Open (1000m) on December 14th, Mossfun more than stamped her claims as one to watch through 2014 when securing impressive victories back-to-back in the Group 3 Widden Stakes (1100m) and Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes (1100m) prior to the Reisling.
Still confident of playing some part in major three-year-old events in the 2014 spring, Team Hawkes are likely to skip Sydney’s headline events including the Group 1 Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) on September 13th in favour of the Melbourne Carnival.
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