Lankan Rupee will contest the 2017 Spring Stakes rather than the P.B. Lawrence Stakes on Saturday and he is currently an odds-on favourite to win the Group 3 event.
Lankan Rupee made his long awaited return to racing in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Ladbrokes Park on August 6 and he looked like the winner at the 100 metre mark, but was run down late by Ability.
Mick Price originally included Lankan Rupee in the acceptances for both the P.B. Lawrence Stakes and the Spring Stakes, but he made the decision early in the week to send the five-time Group 1 winner to Adelaide.
“Originally I was going to the Bletchingly and then three weeks into the P.B. Lawrence, which would have been fine but then there was 13 days so it wouldn’t work,” Price said.
“I was not going to accept in the P.B. Lawrence, but we accepted to have a look at the race and it just worked out better for the horse to go to the 1200.
“I would hate for him to have a very hard run in the P.B. Lawrence.
“Fitness wise and everything else he has a nice bounce back from the Bletchingly.
“He has drawn a nice gate and he looks hard to beat.
“He was ready to run well fresh, but I didn’t have him gunned up ready to win at all costs.”
Price said that he is keen to step Lankan Rupee up to 1400 metres for the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield in a fortnight, but due to a lack of prizemoney in the past 24 months the son of Redoute’s Choice is no certainty to gain a start.
Lankan Rupee has not recorded a race win since his brilliant victory over Brazen Beau and Deep Field in the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 2015, while this is his first race start outside of Melbourne he suffered an injury when he finished ninth behind Chautauqua in the 2015 edition of the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m).
There are no other horses that are available at single-figure Spring Stakes odds and it is I Am Zelady ($11) that is on the second line of betting from Risque ($12), Santa Ana Lane ($12), Lord Aspen ($14), Casino Wizard ($16) and Chocolate Holic ($16).