Field of 8 to line up in wet 2017 Canterbury Stakes

By: Mark Mazzaglia
March 1st, 2017

Trainer Kris Lees can’t see the wet track conditions affecting the performance of Le Romain who is one of eight final acceptors in the 2017 Group 1 $500,000 BMW Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Randwick on Saturday.

Le Romain, above, will be able to handle the wet track in the Canterbury Stakes at Randwick. Photo by Steve Hart.

Le Romain, above, will be able to handle the wet track in the Canterbury Stakes at Randwick. Photo by Steve Hart.

The Randwick track is already rated a heavy 9 on Wednesday morning after receiving 75.6mm of rain in the last seven days and the heavy rain is forecast to hang around until the weekend.

While Le Romain has won four of his five wins on a good track, he does have one heavy track win to his credit when he took out the Schweppes Quality (1000m) at Randwick three runs before winning the Group 1 $1m Girvan Waugh Randwick Guineas (1600m) during the 2016 Sydney Autumn Carnival.

“He’ll definitely run,” Lees told AAP.

“He likes the wet and it’s three weeks since his first-up run which suits him.

“It was a good win under a big weight (61kg).”

Le Romain has drawn barrier six in the Canterbury Stakes with Glyn Schofield taking over from the suspended Hugh Bowman who was aboard the four year old when he won the Group 1 $1m Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on the first day of the 2016 four day Melbourne Cup Carnival and when he resumed for the Autumn Carnival with a win in the Group 3 $150,000 The Chi-X Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on February 13.

The Team Hawkes trained Chautauqua will carry the number one saddlecloth in the weight for age sprint and will jump from barrier four with Tommy Berry taking over from Dwayne Dunn who rode the big grey in his first up third behind Super Cash and I Am A Star in the Group 2 $200,000 Schweppes Rubiton Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on February 11.

Doomben 100000 winner Music Magnate will have no trouble handling the wet conditions with his record showing he has won on both the soft and the heavy in the past and the Bjorn Baker trained five year has returned to the race track in fine style with a first up win in the Group 2 $200,000 Expressway Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on January 28.

Music Magnate has since won a 1000m barrier trial at Gosford on February 15 and has drawn the rails with regular rider Kerrin McEvoy taking the mount again.

Joao Moreira rides the Chris Waller trained Japonisme who has drawn barrier five while the ‘Magic Man’s’ Hong Kong rival Zac Purton takes the ride on the three year old Impending (barrier 7), one of two runners trainer John O’Shea has in the Canterbury Stakes.

O’Shea will also saddle up Hauraki who will jump from the outside of the field at barrier eight with Blake Shinn in the saddle.

New Zealand’s Group 1 2000 Guineas winner Ugo Foscolo will be having his first start for the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott stable and has drawn barrier three with Josh Parr to ride.

Eagle Farm trainer Desleigh Forster is keen to test Too Good To Refuse in Group 1 company again but the Rothesay four year old is facing much tougher company after finishing second in a 1200m Handicap on his home track on February 18.

Tye Angland takes the ride on Too Good To Refuse who has drawn in close at barrier two in the Canterbury Stakes.

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