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Kelinni’s Spring hinges on Sydney Cup performance

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A second attempt at this year’s Melbourne Cup is in the pipeline for Kelinni if he runs up to Chris Waller’s expectation in the Group 1 $500,000 Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) at Randwick on Saturday.

kelinni

Kelinni carried 60kg to win the Japan Racing Association Plate at Randwick. Photo by Steve Hart.

Kelinni ran a mighty race in last year’s Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington and Waller is keen to head back to Melbourne in the Spring.

The Refuse To Bend gelding has been posted the $3 favourite for the Sydney Cup after carrying 60kg to victory in the Listed $100,000 Brookfield Multiplex Japan Racing Association Plate (2000m) at Randwick last week.

“He’s well placed and if he runs up to that performance last week he will be very hard to beat,” Waller said.

“As far as the Spring goes, Saturday’s race will tell us a lot about whether we give him another go at the Melbourne Cup.”

Waller admits that he has been behind the eight ball in his preparation for the 3200m feature after Kelinni surprised the leading trainer with how well he did in the paddock after the Spring.

“He can back a much stronger horse but in terms of being ready to race it made it a little bit harder to get him fit,” Waller said.

“I thought he finished his race off very well last week and while it probably wasn’t an ideal lead up having to carry 60kg on a wet track it was the best we could find and the extra fitness helped to bridge the three week gap from the BMW to the Sydney Cup.”

Kelinni drops to 57kg in the Sydney Cup, the lightest weight he has been asked to carry this Autumn after competing at weight for age prior to his last start Randwick win.

Waller has stuck to a weight for age campaign with Kelnni before winning under Quality conditions and the five year old performed creditably when beaten one and a quarter lengths when fourth to Fiveandahalfstar in the Group 1 $2.25m The BMW (2400m) at Rosehill on April 6.

The leading Sydney trainer is in rare form and was able to make a clean sweep of the two Group 1s that were decided at Randwick last Saturday with Royal Descent taking out the $550,000 Patinack Farm Australian Oaks (2400m) and three year old Sacred Falls securing a rails run to down Pierro in the $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m).

The Gai Waterhouse stable is still mystified at the poor performance of Sydney Cup fancy Julienas but is expecting a return to form after finishing almost thirty-six lengths last to Tremec in the Group 2 $175,000 Schweppes Chairman’s Quality (2600m) at Randwick on April 13.

Julienas has since won a Randwick barrier trial and has been passed by stewards to take his place in the Sydney Cup with Racing Manager Bruce Slade saying the stable is still looking for an excuse.

“We don’t really know what went wrong.” Slade said.

“The horse pulled up OK, and has since trialled really well.

“He seems at the top of his game. It’s still a mystery for us and we’re hoping he can turn it all around “

Julienas is on the fourth line of betting at $8.50, with Maluckyday the second favourite at $4.60 and Tremec also in the market at $8.

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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