Comeback king Jim Byrne is confident he can...
The 2019 Caulfield Cup field has suffered its first scratching with the Stephen Marsh-trained Kiwi Crown Prosecutor out of the $5 million feature.
Last seen running a fast-finishing third behind star New Zealand mare Melody Belle in the Group 1 Livamol Classic (2040m) at Hastings on October 5, the Medaglia D’Oro four-year-old came out of the Group 1 Stella Artois Caulfield Cup (2400m) on Friday afternoon with a leg issue.
On Thursday Racing Victoria ordered New Zealand Derby winner Crown Prosecutor to be re-examined after the gelding “presented with lameness in his right forelimb”.
He failed that subsequent veterinary test, forcing his official withdrawal.
“RV stewards advise that Crown Prosecutor has been withdrawn from tomorrow’s Caulfield Cup by trainer Stephen Marsh following veterinary advice,” an official Racing Victoria statement confirmed.
First emergency for the Caulfield Cup, the Michael Moroney-trained triple-figure roughie Sound ($101), has now gained a start in the handicap classic.
James Winks rides the German-bred Lando stallion who comes off a number of below par runs.
Two back he finished second last at $201 odds when 14th in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) before his seventh to Kings Will Dream in the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington.
All other horses examined by RV vets on Thursday passed their veterinary checks including the English-trained Red Verdon who has been under an injury cloud after showing signs of lameness last week.
The Ed Dunlop-trained Red Verdon is looking to bounce back after his 14th – carrying a hefty 61.5kg – in the Ebor Handicap (2787m) at York on August 24 won by fellow Caulfield Cup hopeful Mustajeer.
“It’s onwards and upwards for our fellow, but this is a very open and tough race,” Robin Trevor-Jones from Ed Dunlop Racing said on Thursday.
“This horse will run a good race. He’s all good to go. He trotted up without any issues this morning.
“We’re going into a $5 million race so we’ll need to be at our top.
“We’re hiding nothing and he’s not had a problem since that day.
“We still have no idea what it was but he was lame. End of story.
“I don’t know whether he has stood on something and pricked himself but he has been sound ever since that day.”
Updated Caulfield Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au have the Chris Waller-trained Finche ($7.50) as the co-favourite with Lindsay Park’s untapped import Constantinople ($7.50) who debuts down under in the feature.
Click here for the latest 2019 Caulfield Cup betting markets.
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