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Race fans will have to wait until Wednesday for the next run of Golden Slipper favourite Cellsabeel with today’s Warwick Farm meeting abandoned due to heavy rainfall and the subsequent state of the track.
A bumper nine-race card was originally scheduled for Saturday headlined by the Ciaron Maher & David Eustace-trained Hinchinbrook filly Cellsabeel running in the $2 million Inglis Millennium (1100m).
Racing NSW however made the call on race day morning to reschedule the Inglis Millennium until next Wednesday due to the waterlogged Warwick Farm track.
“Unfortunately, we have walked the track and while the majority of the track is actually in very good condition considering the rainfall we’ve had, we’re not able to proceed today on the basis that a section of the track near the 1200 metres and also the 1400 metres is not quite right,” chief steward Marc Van Gestel told Sky Racing.
“The forecast is not great for later on today so in those circumstances we have made the decision to postpone today’s meeting and we’ll obviously look to reschedule some of those races that were on today.”
After a barnstorming six length Rosehill win in the wet first-up on January 18, Cellsabeel shot to the top of all-in markets at Ladbrokes.com.au for the Group 1 $3.5 million Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m).
Her lead-up into the world’s richest race for juveniles, held at Rosehill Gardens on March 21, however, has had a slight setback with the delay of her second-up run throwing a spanner in the works according to the stables Sydney-based assistant trainer Annabel Neasham.
“Timing wise it might not be ideal,” Neasham told Sky Racing.
“We were quite keen to go to the Silver Slipper which was two weeks between runs had she run today.
“We’ll obviously have to discuss that with Tim Stakemire (racing manager for Cellsabeel’s owner Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum).
“If we decide that’s the race we want to use to get into the (Golden) Slipper, we’ll have to consider Wednesday because it’s only a 10-day back-up.”
Cellsabeel’s path into the Golden Slipper may be in doubt, but the ace two-year-old was kept fit with a piece of work early on Saturday morning.
“She’s just done a piece of work on the Polytrack,” Neasham said.
“Didn’t let her off the bridle, just a nice working gallop over a half-mile.
“She’d gone out and just done a little trot this morning so she might have been a bit confused coming back out again, but the show goes on. You have to keep working them.”
All-in Golden Slipper 2020 odds at Ladbrokes.com.au have Cellsabeel at $5.50 with Hanseatic the $10 second favourite.
The Anthony Freedman-trained Hanseatic is favourite for Caulfield’s Group 1 $1.5 million Neds Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) on February 22 and runs in the Prelude on CF Orr Stakes Day today.
The other feature Inglis race rescheduled for Wednesday is the $1 million Inglis Sprint (1200m) for three-year-olds.
As for the Group 3 $160,000 Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) for Australian Guineas types and the Listed $140,000 Lonhro Plate (1000m) that were also part of the original Warwick Farm race card, officials are seeking a new timeslot and will make their decision known on Monday.
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