Puissance De Lune is not the only horse in the 2014 P.B. Lawrence Stakes field that will be returning to the races after a lengthy layoff, with Excluded set to have his first race start in over a year in the Group 2 event at Caulfield tomorrow.
Excluded has not been seen at the races since he finished 14th in the Listed Slickpix Stakes (1700m) at Caulfield on August 31 last year and he was sold at the Team Williams Reduction Sale in May for $5000.
Trainer Byron Cozamanis admits that Excluded’s past three runs have been far from impressive, but he told Racing Ahead this morning that he has been happy with the trackwork of the High Chaparral gelding and is hoping that he can produce a competitive performance in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) on Saturday.
“He is actually working pretty good,” Cozamanis said.
“He has had a few issues with his throat and all that, but he has worked alright.
“He hasn’t raced for a long time, so we are just expecting him to run a nice even race.
“I think that he has a bit of ability the horse, but he has had the throat op, a long time off the scene and he is pretty big.
“He was just brought to go to South Australia, but they found out his rating a bit too high so that made it a bit tricky.
“We will give him a few runs here and hopefully he can hit his straps.
“He had good form earlier, his last few runs weren’t that flash, but he is working well enough to run a respectable race.
“I will just leave it to Stevie (Arnold) to work out, but hopefully he can just sit midfield and try to run home.”
Excluded made his racing debut at Bendigo in 2010 and worked his way through the grades before he was given an opportunity at black type level after he performed well in races like the Terang Cup (2150m), The Lavazza Long Black (2800m) and the Sofitel Girls Day Out Handicap (2000m).
The tough gelding had no luck when he made his debut at Group level in the 2012 Group 3 JRA Cup (2040m) and he narrowly missed out on earning a start in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) when he finished second in the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) at Caulfield before failing to fire in the Group 3 Lexus Stakes (2500m) and Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m).
Excluded is currently an outsider in the 2014 P.B. Lawrence Stakes betting market with Ladbrokes Australia and is available at the lengthy quote of $81.