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The two early favourites Cliff’s Edge and Royal Symphony have been announced as non-runners in the 2017 Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington on Saturday.

Royal Symphony, above, won't run in the 2017 Victoria Derby at Flemington. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Royal Symphony, above, won’t run in the 2017 Victoria Derby at Flemington. Photo by Ultimate Racing Photos.

Royal Symphony copped a battering when fourth to super star mare Winx in last Saturday’s Group 1 $3m Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) at The Valley.

Trainer Tony McEvoy said that Royal Symphony returned to the enclosure after the race battered and bruised and would not recover in time to take his place in the Victoria Derby.

“He’s pretty sad and sorry this morning (Sunday),” McEvoy told RSN.

“I couldn’t see him recovering well enough to be backing up within seven days so we are going to give him the respect he wasn’t showed yesterday.”

“He’s got lumps and bumps and couple of cuts, nothing too serious but he isn’t a happy horse, he clearly didn’t enjoy what happened yesterday.”

“So we will give him a good rest and hopefully it doesn’t have any lasting effects on him mentally.”

Royal Symphony was hammered by Damien Oliver’s mount Happy Clapper who was racing tight to his outside in the run to the first turn out of the straight in the Ladbrokes Cox Plate.

Oliver was subsequently suspended for twenty meetings for improper riding by Racing Victoria Stewards.

Royal Symphony had put himself in contention for the Victoria Derby with some solid recent efforts and two starts back was sent out as one of the top fancies for the Group 1 $2m Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield on October 14 before finishing an unlucky fourth to the Mick Price trained outsider Mighty Boss.

The Darren Weir trained Cliff’s Edge was elevated to the top of the Victoria Derby market order at Ladbrokes.com.au following his win in the Group 3 $350,000 Ladbrokes Classic (2000m) at Caulfield on October 21.

But the leading trainer has decided not to step Cliff’s Edge up to the 2500m of the Victoria Derby after being out classed by the filly Aloisia in the Group 2 $200,000 Drummond Gold Vase (2040m) at The Valley last Saturday.

The Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young trained Main Stage has now found himself at the top of the Victoria Derby market order at $4.50 with Ladbrokes,com.au just ahead of last start Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes winner Ace High at $5 and Ladbrrokes Classic runner up Tangled at $5.50.

Main Stage put himself into Victoria Derby contention with a win in the Listed $120,000 UCI Stakes (1800m) at Flemington on October 7 and then ran a solid third behind Cliff’s Edge and Tangled in the Ladbrokes Classic.

Early market order for the 2017 Victoria Derby at Ladbrokes.com.au: $4.50 Main Stage, $5 Ace High, $5.50 Tangled, $6.50 Sully, $7 Weather With You, $13 Astoria, Ocean’s Fourteen, $15 Greycliffe, Salsamor, $17 Eshtiraak, $26 Pissaro, $34 Johnny Vinko, $41 Aberro, Justice Faith, Rockarral, $51 Nothing Too Hard, Wolfe Tone, $101 Basanite.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.

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