Classy mare Commanding Jewel is recovering from a nasty cut to her hoof that she suffered in September and remains an outside chance to return to the races for the 2014 Autumn Racing Carnival.
Commanding Jewel started her 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a solid sixth behind Broken in the Listed Carlyon Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on August 21 and recorded an impressive win in the Group 2 Let’s Elope Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on September 7 but had her preparation prematurely ended after she cut her hoof in the lead-up to the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 29.
Part-owner Brad Spicer told Racing Victoria that the four-year-old still has a cast on the injured hoof and revealed that connections will not know whether she can return for an autumn campaign until the cast is removed next month.
“The cast will come off in two to three weeks’ time and once that’s off we’ll be able to assess where we go with her and whether she’ll have a short autumn campaign or whether she’ll be missing until the spring,” Spicer said.
“The vets are pretty hopeful everything’s fine and if we can get her back for some races in April or May that’d be great but it’s pretty much up to the vets.
“Once they pull that cast off and if everything’s heeled up the way they want it and knitted well we could be looking at a mini-campaign in the autumn with a view to the spring.”
Spicer did not reveal which races that Commanding Jewel would target if she was able to compete before next spring but there are a number of events on the revamped 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Calendar that look like appropriate targets for the 2012 Thousand Guineas winner.
The Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 22nd will likely come around too quickly for Commanding Jewel but the $1 million Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m), which will now be run at Royal Randwick as part of The Championships, looks like an ideal race for the three-quarter sister to retire glamour mare Atlantic Jewel.
Injury have restricted Commanding Jewel to just seven race starts since she made her debut at Swan Hill in August last year but she showed her talent by winning the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) by a dominant three lengths during the 2012 Spring Racing Carnival.