The tendon injury to Japanese stayer Bande has put serious doubt on him taking his place in the Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 4.
Bande was sensationally scratched from Saturday’s Group 1 $3m Crown Golden Ale Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield following an inspection this morning by Racing Victoria Chief Veterinarian Brian Stewart who found the Caulfield Cup second favourite to be suffering from heat and pain in off fore tendon.
Stewart then informed Racing Victoria stewards of his findings which gave them no choice but take him out of the Caulfield Cup field and put serious doubt on him being fit to run in the Melbourne Cup in two and half weeks time.
“Unless there is a minor miracle I don’t think that he will be running in the Melbourne Cup,” Stewart told Racing Ahead.
“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.
Takahide Ando, assistant trainer to Yoshito Yahagi, had reported that Bande had thrived since arriving in Australia and was happy with his work after galloping at Caulfield last Saturday morning and the team was looking forward to running in both the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.
Ando has also 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.
“He’s better than last time he run. I think he’s improving after that race. He’s ready,” Ando said.
When he was withdrawn from the Caulfield Cup field, Bande was the second favourite at $8 and is currently marked as a $13 chance in the Melbourne Cup with Ladbrokes.com.au.
German stayer Protectionist rocketed to the top of Melbourne Cup market order and is now the $7 favourite following an eye catching fourth to Big Memory in the Group 2 $200,000 Sportingbet Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) at Caulfield on October 11.
Japan’s other Spring Carnival visitor Admire Rakti is the second pick at $9 with Caulfield Cup favourite Lucia Valentina next in the betting at $11 while Caulfield Stakes winner Fawkner and the Chris Waller trained Who Shot Thebarman share the $13 mark with Bande.