Japanese stayer Bande is officially scratched from the 2014 Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 4 because of a leg injury.
Bande was sensationally scratched from last Saturday’s Group 1 $3m Crown Golden Ale Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on the eve of the Spring Carnival feature because of a tendon injury and it was only a formality that he would not run at Flemington on the first Tuesday in November.
Racing Victoria stewards confirmed today via twitter that the highly rated stayer won’t be running in the Melbourne Cup and will return home to Japan without having a start in Australia.
“Scratching: 04-11-2014 Flemington 7 – Bande has been officially scratched from the Melbourne Cup,” Racing Victoria Stewards tweeted.
Bande was highly rated and well supported to win the Caulfield Cup before Racing Victoria Chief Veterinarian Brian Stewart found the second favourite to be suffering from heat and pain in off fore tendon.
A disappointed Takahide Ando, assistant trainer to Yoshito Yahagi, reported that Bande had improved since his last start five lengths all the way win in the Listed Japan Sapporo Nikkei (2600m) at Japan on August 10 and was ready to run a strong 2400m.
At the time of inspection last Friday, Dr Stewart hinted that Bande would be very doubtful to run in the Melbourne Cup and that was confirmed today.
“Unless there is a minor miracle I don’t think that he will be running in the Melbourne Cup,” Dr Stewart told Racing Ahead last Friday.
“The tendon is hot and his condition is not acceptable for any race.
“It was a very straightforward veterinary decision.
“It was very definitely a tendon and there was no point in delaying the system even longer.”
Ironically it was Bande’s fellow Japanese companion Admire Rakti who stole the show last Saturday by circling the field before winning the Caulfield Cup for the first time for Japan.
Admire Rakti, with top international jockey Zac Purotn in the saddle, carried 58kgs to victory last Saturday in the Caulfield Cup and has been penalized half a kilogram for the Melbourne Cup and will now carry 58.5kgs.
“I think the quality of his performance demanded a penalty,” Racing Victoria Chief Handicapper Greg Carpenter told Racing.com.
“In making the decision I had to take into account the horses he beat on Saturday, but also the new challenges that lie ahead at Flemington.
The latest Melbourne Cup market at Ladbrokes.com.au has Admire Rakti the $4.60 favourite ahead of the German stayer Protectionist at $6.50 and Caulfield Cup third placegetter Lucia Valentina at $7.50.
Next in the betting is Caulfield Stakes winner Fawkner at $13, The Metropolitan winner Junoob at $17 with a host of runners on the $21 mark, Brambles, Araldo, Mutual Regard, Red Cadeaux, The Offer , Who Shot Thebarman and Willing Foe.