After a fantastic win in the 2014 Melbourne Cup, plans for German raider Protectionist’s first full campaign in Australia were underway.
It was announced that the four-year-old entire would be transferred from the care of German trainer Andreas Wohler to Kris Lees as his owners decided to keep him in Australia, racing for Australian Bloodstock.
A second tilt in the Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) is on the cards after he won the ‘race that stops the nation’ by four lengths, with his lead-up campaign needing to be planned around it.
The weight-for-age Group 1 BMW (2400m) on April 4 was the original target but changes to the Sydney autumn carnival program means the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m), which is considered the lead-up race to The BMW, will run just one week prior.
Australian Bloodstock director Jamie Lovett revealed they had to reconsider Protectionists plans, including a possible trip to Singapore.
“Ideally we were going to head to the BMW but we’ve had a look at the calendar in the past two days,” Lovett told Sky Sports Radio.
“They’ve thrown the Ranvet in a week before the BMW so we’re probably a bit up in the air.
“We’ve got a couple of options – the Australian Cup – or there’s a race at Kranji in May worth $3 million, the Singapore Ailines Cup.
“We hadn’t realised until Kris pointed it out that the traditional lead-up to the BMW is seven days before.”
Lovett also revealed that Protectionist’s stablemate Singing would be making the journey out to Australia soon. The pair went up against each other in the Group 2 Hansa-Preis (2413m) in Germany on June 29, with Protectionist winning just one length ahead of Singing in second place.
“Singing had a setback which was disappointing because we thought he was our Caulfield Cup horse,” Lovett said.
“Andreas has a very good opinion of the horse and the plan is to bring him out later in the year.”
After Protectionist’s dominant win in the 2014 Melbourne Cup, it’ll be interesting to see what Singing can add. It would seem the 2015 Australian racing calendar may just be inundated with German talent.
Open your online betting account at Ladbrokes.com.au to back Protectionist in the 2015 Melbourne Cup future betting market, in which he’s a $13 shot to complete the double.