Five-year-old Lucky Hussler has had a strong 2014 spring campaign, finishing first three in all five of his starts. Despite this, trainer Darren Weir has resisted the temptation to take the horse to Perth for the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) Saturday week. Instead he will be sent straight to the spelling paddock.
“I thought about taking him to Perth for the Railway, but in the end I figured he has had a really good prep and he can spell now then come back in good order for the autumn,” Weir told Racing Network on Monday.
The temptation to go for the $1 million Railway Stakes at Ascot would have been strong for Weir, considering the remarkable job he’s done with turning Lucky Hussler’s form around.
After finishing last of 18 runners in the Group 1 AAMI Stradbroke (1400m) on June 7, the entire returned almost three months later for a third finish in the Listed Drummond Golf Stakes (1200m) on September 6. The horse then finished runner-up in both the Le Pine Funerals Handicap (1400m) and Listed Headquarters Tavern Stakes (1400m) before winning the Group 3 Moonga Stakes (1400m) on October 18.
The 2014 Moonga Stakes was Luck Hussler’s first group race since the Stradbroke. He started to track forward at halfway before sweeping up at the 300m and absolutely trotting in to the win with a strong 3½ length lead.
This was followed up by another runner-up finish in the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) on Saturday, missing out on the win to Hucklebuck by just a neck.
Weir realised a run in the 2014 Railway Stakes was superfluous, with Lucky Hussler already more than proving himself this season. He will now be sent to the spelling paddock for a much-needed break before returning strong in the autumn.
“There are some really nice races for him in the autumn in Sydney so we won’t go to Perth – he’ll go to the paddock and have a nice break,” the trainer added.
There are still over 60 strong horses nominated for the Railway Stakes 2014, with a field limit of just 30. Betting markets will open shortly after the final field is announced next Wednesday, so make sure your online betting account at Ladbrokes.com.au is open and ready to go.