A nasty tendon injury suffered during a run at Moonee Valley on Friday night has forced the early retirement of Peter Morgan & Craig Widdison’s “tough-as-nails” mare Averau.
The five-year-old daughter of Stratum lined up under the lights at The Valley on Friday evening in what turned out to be her swansong start in the $150,000 Listed ADAPT Australia Torney Night Cup (2500m).
She was last over the line when crossing ninth, 16 lengths off the winner Taiyoo, but the short-priced favourite pulled up lame in her left foreleg post-race with a tendon injury that has now ruled her out of racing for life.
“It was pretty big the hole she blew in her tendon so there wasn’t really any hope of her racing again,” co-trainer Widdison told Racing Victoria on Monday.
A $130,000 purchase by current connections from the 2011William Inglis and Son Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale, Averau bows out of racing with a record of seven wins and two seconds from 19 starts.
She won $270,400 in prize money and was heading towards a possible run in the Group 2 Adelaide Cup (3200m) at Morphettville on March 9.
She won her two lead-up races into the Torney Night Cup including the Listed Bagot Handicap (2800m) at Flemington by three and a half lengths but never got a chance to race in Group company.
Instead of getting caught up over the what-ifs, Widdison was happy to look back over the mare’s career and be thankful for the good runs she did put in before her career at stud.
“Without worrying about where we thought she could have ended up, if you just went off her record as it stands you’ve got to be happy with it,” he said.
“She was as tough as nails and she just kept improving so it’s definitely a shame but thankfully she’ll have a long and happy life as a broodmare.
“She’s only got to throw a bit of her attitude to her progeny and she should have a pretty successful career going forward.”
Torney Night Cup winner Taiyoo meanwhile earned a likely shot at the same race Averau was to target, the Adelaide Cup.
The Haradasun five-year-old defeated Crime Fighter by three quarters of a length to kick off the weekend’s black type racing, his fourth straight win this summer.
Trainer Darren Weir has no concerns about the up-and-coming stayer’s class regarding an Adelaide Cup bid but said the timing also needed to be right to make the trip to South Australia for the two mile feature.
“It’s just a question of the timing,” Weir told The Advertiser.
“I don’t like giving my horses too long between runs when they’re running over a trip but we don’t have too many other options.
“I told (owner) Darren (Dance) that if we won, we’d have to think about the Adelaide Cup.”
Weir however has confirmed last year’s Warrnambool Cup winner Akzar for an Adelaide Cup bid that goes up a notch this weekend in the traditional lead-up race, the $115,000 Group 3 Lord Reims Stakes (2600m).