source : www.racing.com
Valiant King will not be present for the Melbourne Cup final declarations on Saturday afternoon, with connections opting to look to the future with the valuable young import.
Co-owner Ozzie Kheir confirmed on Friday evening that the four-year-old would go on a spell as per the original plan after making a brave Australian debut when finishing an encouraging sixth in the Caulfield Cup.
The Joseph O’Brien-trained galloper was diagnosed as lame upon inspection by Racing Victoria vets this week and although he was given until Saturday morning to improve the horse’s condition, Kheir was proactive on Friday evening in indicating that the campaign of the horse had expired. come to an end.
”Following this morning’s RV inspections where Valiant King was found to be slightly lame after work, we had our own vets come back this evening to inspect him and agreed with RV’s assessment as he remained slightly lame ” said.
”He was due to be inspected by RV tomorrow morning but regardless of the outcome we have decided that we will now withdraw him from the Melbourne Cup so that other connections about to enter the race can make plans.
“Unfortunately for the ownership group, Joseph O’Brien and his traveling team, it is obviously very disappointing to come so close and stumble over this final hurdle.
“We have always said that we believe he will be a talented horse in the future and by looking after him now we will get the reward in the autumn and sprint next year.”
”We hope to focus the Australian Cup on Flemington again, provided he acclimatises properly in the capable hands of Chris Waller.
“The communication with the camper and the handling of the matter have been very professional and supportive.”
Zac Lloyd was booked for the ride with 50 kilograms.
The difficult decision not to continue with Valiant King this spring has something of a silver lining for a number of owners, as it meant that one of their horses in Interpretation will now certainly make the final Melbourne Cup line-up.
Interpretation rose to 24th after his Bendigo Cup victory on Wednesday, but he could have been ejected at the last minute with Saturday’s Archer Stakes winner out of the running for the Melbourne Cup. Teo Nugent has been booked to drive.
New Zealand galloper Ladies Man rises to 24th and he is one of five Archer Stakes horses racing for their cup spot.
MELBOURNE CUP POSSIBLE FIELD (according to likely handicap order):
1 – GOLDEN JOURNEY (Ciaron Maher/Dave Eustace) James McDonald 58.5kg
2 – ALENQUER (Mike Moroney) Damien Oliver 56.5kg
3 – WITHOUT FIGHT (Anthony and Sam Freedman) Mark Zahra 56.5kg
4 – TO FINISH (Tatsuya Yoshioka) Kohei Matsuyama 55kg
5 – VAUBAN (Willie Mullins) Ryan Moore 55kg
6 – SOULCOMBE (Chris Waller) João Moreira 53.5kg
7 – ABSURD (Willie Mullins) Zach Purton 53kg
8 – YOU’RE RIGHT (Ciaron Maher/Dave Eustace) John Allen 53kg
9 – PROMISE AND DECLARE (Danny O’Brien) Billy Egan 53kg
10 – CLEVELAND (Kris Read) Michael Dee 52kg
11 – ASHRUN (Ciaron Maher/Dave Eustace) Kerrin McEvoy 51.5kg
12 – DAQIANSWEET JUNIOR (Phillip Stokes) Daniel Stackhouse 51.5kg
13 – OKITA SOUSHI (Joseph O’Brien) Dylan Gibbons 51.5kg
14 – SHERAZ (Chris Waller) TB 51.5kg
15 – LASTOTCHKA (Mick Price/Micheal Kent Jr.) Craig Williams 51 kg
16 – MAGIC LAGOON (Chris Waller) Beau Mertens 51 kg
17 – MILITARY MISSION (Gai Waterhouse/Adrian Bott) Rachel King 51 kg
18 – SERPENTINE (Gai Waterhouse/Adrian Bott) Jye McNeil 51 kg
19 – VIRTUAL CIRCLE (Liam Howley) Craig Newitt 51 kg
20 – MORE criminals (Chris Waller) Jamie Kah 50.5kg
21 – FUTURE HISTORY (Ciaron Maher/Dave Eustace) Hollie Doyle 50kg
22 – INTERPRETATION (Ciaron Maher/Dave Eustace) Teo Nugent 50kg
23 – WOMAN (Allan Sharrock) Dean Yendall 50kg
24 – TRUE MARVEL (Matthew Smith) Ben Thompson 50kg
Others listed in voting order:
25 – ATHABASCAN (John O’Shea) TBC (was Zac Lloyd) 50kg
26 – UNITED NATIONS (Ciaron Maher/Dave Eustace) TB 50kg
27 – KALPOER (Kris Read) TB 50kg
28 – MAINLY CLOUDY (Trent Busuttin/Natalie Young) TB 50kg
source : www.racing.com