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Chris Waller left everyone eagerly waiting for the news on Winx next race after the champion mare’s record-equalling third Ladbrokes Cox Plate win and he has now confirmed it will not be in the 2017 Emirates Stakes.
Contested on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Saturday November 11 at Flemington Racecourse, the recently revamped Group 1 $2 million Emirates Stakes (2000m) called as a possible final spring option for the superstar daughter of Street Cry.
Waller was always 50/50 on Winx backing-up in the weight-for-age Emirates Stakes, keeping the hopes of the Victorian Racing Club alive until Friday afternoon’s delayed media conference where in confirmed she would head to the paddock as she had after her other previous two Cox Plate victories.
“It’s time now to have a break,” Waller said.
“She deserves a holiday and we’re not far behind!”
Winx equalled Kingston Town from the early 1980s with the Cox Plate three-peat on October 28 holding off the eager Humidor late to make it 22 straight wins and 15 Group 1 triumphs.
Waller left the call of whether or not to tackle the Emirates Stakes until Friday after discussions with the mare’s regular rider Hugh Bowman and the lucky connections of Australia’s now highest earning racehorse.
“It’s a quick turnaround to the autumn. She’s got to be back in work in early December and we don’t take risks with her,” he said before the official announcement at 4pm (AEDT).
Overseas options for Winx in 2018 now call for the six-year-old including a possible trip to England for the Royal Ascot Carnival during our winter.
The final call on whether Winx performs on the international stage however won’t be made by the stable until the end of the autumn season next year.
While a chance to set a new record with a fourth win in Australasia’s weight-for-age championship at The Valley next October is unlikely, the bookies are taking no chances with Winx $3.50 in all-in 2018 Cox Plate betting at Ladbrokes.com.au.
The Winx news that she heads for a well-earned spell means Bowman is free to ride Kiwi raider Gingernuts in the Emirates Stakes field.
A Group 1 winner down under as a three-year-old Gingernuts was originally slated to travel down under for the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m), but a Group 1 race meeting cancellation due to rain back across the Tasman saw his plans reshuffled.
To get behind Winx next race at the right price either in Australia or overseas, head to Ladbrokes.com.au now.
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