Confirming the classy three-year-old has returned to full work at his Caulfield stables, trainer Mick Price has revealed Moonovermanhattan will not contest events over 2000m in distance through the 2015 Australian racing calendar, and will be set for the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) during the Autumn Carnival.
Running on for a credible seventh in the featured Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) on October 11th, Moonovermanhattan charged home to secure a career-best victory to date in the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase (2040m) on October 25th, but was unable to get the distance when finishing a forgettable 12th in the Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) most recently on November 1st.
Revealing he remains unsure as to whether or not the Manhattan Rain colt would have been competitive over the mile and a half running distance of the Victoria Derby should he have found the race earlier in his spring preparation, Price told TVN he considers 2000m to be Moonovermanhattan’s pet distance, but is confident of a successful performance over a mile in the 2015 Australian Guineas.
“He appeals to me as a good 2000 metre horse,” Price said.
“I think it is inconclusive whether he ran the trip or not because he raced like a horse who had come to the end of it and was a bit tired.
“I don’t need to go back there with him, there’s no need to run him over 2400 metres again.
“He’s done well in his month off and he’s been set for the Australian Guineas.”
Charging home to take out the Group 3 Darley National Stakes (1200m) on debut in May before immediately returning to the paddock for a brief spell, Moonovermanhattan beat just one runner home in the Group 3 McNeil Stakes (1200m) first-up on August 30th but quickly found a good racing rhythm in placing fourth in the Listed Living Legends Stakes (1400m) and second to Group 1 winner Almalad in the Group 2 Bill Stutt Stakes (1600m) in his only other start prior to the Caulfield Guineas.