Trainer Gai Waterhouse has abandoned plans to run English import Carlton House in the Group 1 $500,000 The Star Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick on October 5.
Stable foreman Mark Newnham informed Racing New South Wales on Tuesday morning that Carlton House would not be contesting the Epsom Handicap in which he was well fancied in the market order.
Carlton House, who is owned by Her Majesty The Queen, ran second in a 1200m Randwick barrier trial on September 20 and Waterhouse was running out of time to have him fit enough for the tough Randwick 1600m on Saturday week.
“I was happy with the trial, I wanted him to have a good testing hit out,” Waterhouse told Racing Network.
“He is difficult to place at this stage of the spring carnival in Sydney, we could look to running him first-up in Melbourne.”
“The Shannon Stakes will come too soon for him and we were hoping for something a little easier than the Epsom first-up.”
Carlton House’s Spring campaign is still up in the air and Waterhouse is planning to discuss the six year old’s programme with The Queen’s racing manager John Warren with the Melbourne Carnival on the agenda.
“I’ll have to have a chat to John Warren, Queen Elizabeth’s racing manager, and decide where we go with him,” Waterhouse said.
Carlton House has had one run for the Waterhouse stable since arriving in Sydney and was beaten just over five lengths when thirteenth to Havana Rey in the Group 2 $175,000 Hyland Race Colours Ajax Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on March 30.
The Street Cry stallion is yet to win at Group 1 level but has two placings to his credit in England before being shipped to Australia via Hong Kong where he ran sixth to California Memory in the Group 1 HK$22m Longines Hong Kong Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin last December.
Carlton House looked like having a bright future winning at Group 2 level at York before running third to Pour Moi in the 2011 Group 1 £1,325,000 Investec (Epsom) Derby (1 mile, 4 furlongs) at Epsom.
Carlton House also ran second to the dual Cox Plate winner So You Think in the 2012 Group 1 £500,000 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes (1 mile 2 furlongs) at Royal Ascot.
Last Saturday’s Randwick winner Boban and Cameron Handicap winner Toydini are fighting for Epsom Handicap favouritism around the $5 mark while Carlton House was a $16 chance before his withdrawal.