Spring Carnival star It’s A Dundeel has succumbed to a foot injury and will not line up in the Group 1 $400,000 Cathay Pacific Caulfield Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
It’s A Dundeel’s Spring campaign hit a small speed bump when the Kiwi stallion developed a foot abscess after denying Atlantic Jewel her tenth straight win with a nose victory in the Group 1 $400,000 Hyland Race Colours Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on September 21.
The Kiwi multiple Group 1 winner pulled up okay after the Underwood Stakes but was sore after work on Saturday morning.
Trainer Murray Baker is very confident that It’s A Dundeel will make a full recovery to be fit for the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 26 and is anticipating the stallion will be right to gallop on Saturday morning.
“We’ll let the heel harden up and we won’t do a lot with him this week, we’ll possibly be ready to have a gallop this Saturday and we’ll just take it from there,” Baker told Radio Sport National.
“He went to the beach this morning and his heel is still a bit tender so we won’t be able to run on Saturday. We’d rather not risk it.”
“He’ll probably be right to work tomorrow or Thursday but it’s still very tender, it has to harden up a bit.
“We thought we had it initially when the abscess popped out of a small quarter crack but it travelled back up the foot, went to the bulb of his heel and it burst on Monday.”
Baker said that his Melbourne representative Emily Murphy had worked overtime to get the heel right, but they have run out time to have him ready for a rematch with Atlantic Jewel in the Caulfield Stakes.
“Emily worked feverishly on it Saturday and Sunday and it just took a little while to break out, we’re probably a couple of days too late,” Baker said.
“It’s very unfortunate, it’s bad timing but touch wood we’ve still got a horse, he’s sound, he’s got nothing wrong with him, it could have been a lot worse.”
Racegoers will now have to wait until Cox Plate day for a rematch between the Kiwi star and Mark Kavanagh’s glamour mare Atlantic Jewel.
A win by Atlantic Jewel in Saturday’s Caulfield Stakes will see her cement her place at the top of the Cox Plate market order, she is currently the $3.2o favourite.
It’s A Dundeel is also well in contention at $4.20 with Puissance De Lune and Fiorente sharing the next line of betting at $5.50 after finishing second and fourth respectively to Happy Trails in Saturday’s Group 1 $500,000 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on Saturday.