Festival Stakes Likely For Mouro

By: Thomas Hackett
November 26th, 2014

Trainer Tony McEvoy has confirmed that Mouro is likely to remain in Sydney for the 2014 Festival Stakes at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday rather than make the trip to Brisbane for the Listed Recognition Stakes (1500m).

Mouro is set to take his place in the field for the 2014 Festival Stakes that will be held at Rosehill Gardens this weekend. Photo by: Race Horse Photos Australia

Mouro is set to take his place in the field for the 2014 Festival Stakes that will be held at Rosehill Gardens this weekend. Photo by: Race Horse Photos Australia

McEvoy elected to include Mouro in the acceptances for both races and was leaning towards running Mouro in the Recognition Stakes, but he told RSN this morning that he has reassessed his plans with the talented entire after he drew barrier 13 for the Recognition Stakes and barrier three for the Festival Stakes.

“Brisbane looked the race I wanted to go for,” McEvoy

“There were ten horses in Sydney rated over 100 and one horse in Brisbane rated over 100, which was him.

“He has come up with barrier 13 in Brisbane and barrier three in Sydney.

“I haven’t quiet made the decision yet, but he is a 90 percent chance of staying in Sydney.”

Whether Mouro contests the 2014 Starlight Stakes or the Recognition Stakes on Saturday, he will return to Sydney for the Group 2 Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on December 13 before he is set for a freshen up ahead of a 2015 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival campaign.

Mouro stamped himself as a horse to watch when he finished his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with back-to-back wins in the Sale Cup and Group 3 Eclipse Stakes (1800m) before he made a winning start to his autumn preparation with a tough performance in the Group 3 Rewards Stakes (1400m) at Flemington.

The Grand Slam entire failed to fire in both the Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 22 and the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 12 and he was sent to the spelling paddock after he suffered an injury during the running of the Group 3 Hawkesbury Gold Cup (1600m) on May 3.

The injury meant that Mouro missed the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but McEvoy elected to set the five-year-old for a summer campaign and he returned to racing with a close second behind Heart Testa in the Cellarbrations Kingswood Handicap (1350m) at Rosehill Gardens on November 15.

Mouro is currently available at 2014 Festival Stakes odds of $9.50, while Godolphin sprinter Generalife ($4.60) is currently a narrow favourite from Queensland Guineas winner Sir Moments ($5), Chris Waller-trained Strawberry Boy ($7.50) and last start winner Heart Testa ($9).

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