Godolphin Racing Manager Jason Walsh has revealed that Kumaon is set to be scratched from the 2014 Up And Coming Stakes that will be run at Royal Randwick tomorrow.
Kumaon has not been seen at the races since he finished third behind Go Indy Go and Zululand in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 26 and has impressed trainer John O’Shea with his trackwork ahead of the start of his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign.
Walsh told Racing Ahead that Kumaon took plenty of benefit out of his stint in the spelling paddock, but is likely to miss the Group 3 Up And Coming Stakes because of the rain affected Royal Randwick track that is currently rated in the heavy range.
“He is in great form and I think that he has made definite progress from his juvenile year,” Walsh said.
“He has had a couple of nice jump outs at home too and couldn’t be more pleasing.
“He worked with Earthquake on Tuesday morning and stuck right with her, but again he was in good form in the autumn in the Sires and he really disappointed on a heavy track.
“If the track stays in that kind of range he would be unlikely too.”
Lightly-raced colt Meursault has also been included in the 2014 Up And Coming Stakes field and he set to make his debut at Group level at Royal Randwick this weekend.
Meursault scored a dominant three lengths win in the Evergreen Turf Claret Stakes (1300m) at Hawkesbury on May 3 and has been included in nominations for all the major races set to take place during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but Walsh admits that the Medaglia D’Oro colt is facing a significant step-up in class in the Up And Coming Stakes.
“We think that he is a really talented colt with a really nice future,” Walsh said.
“You have to be very good to jump from that sort of grade straight into Stakes class.
“We are very pleased with him at home and he gives the impression that he will appreciate up to a mile and maybe even further.
“It will be a good test for him up in grade.”
Kumaon has been a big drifter in 2014 Up And Coming Stakes betting market and he is out to a quote of $11, while Meursault is currently available at 2014 Up And Coming Stakes odds of $5.50.