On-going feet problems could halt Aidan O’Brien’s super colt Caravaggio making his way to Australia for the $10m The Everest (1200m) at Randwick on October 14.
Caravaggio was in line to fill Coolmore’s slot in the inaugural running of The Everest but with two disappointing runs in conjunction with his hoof problems has put some serious doubt in him making the trip down under.
Caravaggio, who is trained out of O’Brien’s world renowned Ballydoyle training facility in Ireland, was well in contention at $8 in early betting for The Everest at Ladbrokes.com.au before his form fell away after winning his first six race track appearances.
The signs that the wheels were starting to fall off appeared when the colt finished fourth to Harry Angel in the Group 1 £500,000 Darley July Cup Stakes (6 furlongs) at Newmarket in England on July 15 and then Caravaggio was unsighted again when a labouring sxith to Brando in the Group 1 €380,000 Larc Prix Maurice De Gheest (300m) at Deauville in France on August 6.
O’Brien said that Caravaggio pulled up very sore after his trip to France and partly blamed the shoes that he was wearing and said a trip to Australia was now looking very doubtful.
“Caravaggio was shod before the July Cup and the day before he was just a little bit footy,” O’Brien said.
“We changed the style of the shoe that he was wearing to one with a bit of rubber between the foot and the shoe itself. He was 100 per cent when we put them on.
“He just didn’t travel the way he can travel, and he ran again in those shoes on Sunday.
“Ryan (Moore) came back in and said he’s just not getting any traction.
“The rearing up in the stalls is something we can sort but when he came out Ryan said he’s changing and not feeling comfortable.
“He pulled out very sore, so there is obviously an issue with the shoes that he is wearing.
“Obviously it’s very hard to say he could go to Australia after his last two runs.
“We will see how he is in a week to 10 days, and if we can get him back to the way we know he can move he could come back here (the Curragh) over five furlongs on Irish Champions Weekend.
“Then he could go on to Ascot.”
Randwick 1200m specialist Chautauqua sits at the top of the market order for The Everest at $4.60 ahead of the 2017 Golden Slipper winner She Will Reign at $6.50 and Bataash, English and Winx at $11.
Early market order for the 2017 The Everest at Ladbrokes.com.au: $4.60 Chautauqua, $6.50 She Will Reign, $11 Winx, English, Bataash, $13 Caravaggio, Russian Revolution, Houtzen, $15 Spieth, $21 Clearly Innocent, Limato, Redkirk Warrior, Redzel, Vega Magic, $26 Fell Swoop, Le Romain, Terravista, Acapulco, Black Heart Bart, Lankan Rupee, $34 Bound For Nowhere, Black Heart Bart, Global Glamour, Lankan Rupee, Malaguerra, Pariah, $41 Derryn, $51 or better the rest.