Trainer Mick Price believes that Lankan Rupee is in excellent condition ahead of the Group 3 Kevin Heffernan Stakes(1200m) at Caulfield on Saturday but admits that the speedy gelding has not be trained to run 1200 metres this preparation.
Lankan Rupee has improved significantly since being gelded at the end of his autumn campaign, winning a heat of the Essendon Mazda 55 Second Series at Moonee Valley as well as the Listed Dilmah Earl Grey Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on Crown Oaks Day, and has raced exclusively over shorter trips.
Price told Racing Ahead that he has not had time to specifically train the son of Redoute’s Choice for a 1200 metre contest but said he is not worried about the four-year-old running out the trip and is confident that he goes into the Group 3 event with every winning chance.
“His form is great, we had a good opinion of him as a colt, but he had his issues there,” Price said on RSN.
“I think I am taking a little bit of a risk on him as far as a winning chance goes.
“There is nothing wrong with the horse, he is in excellent condition, but we have just had him really fresh all the time for those shorter races and I am hoping that he doesn’t race like that and feel the pinch.
“I haven’t specifically trained up for the 1200m because we haven’t had time but with the racing and the one Wednesday morning gallop he should be pretty spot-on.
“I have no issues with him over 1200 metres and I would think that he is going to be a very good chance.”
Lankan Rupee has shown plenty of pace throughout his career and Price believes that the four-year-old will be positioned towards the run of the field with She Can Skate and stablemate Le Bonsir.
Price is hoping that his two gallopers can settle in a forward position without being locked into a speed battle with She Can Skate – who he rates as his biggest threat to winning the Group 2 event with either of his two gallopers.
“If She Can Skate races like she trials than she will go forward from out there,” Price said.
“Lankan Rupee can be pretty keen, especially in a slow run 1200, and he will put himself right there.
“In that 1000 metre down the straight the other day he flew out of the gates and put himself in a position on the bridle so I am hoping that they sort themselves out properly without eyeballing.
“I have a high opinion of She Can Skate.
“I think she is hard fit and cherry ripe and it looks a nice race for her.”
Group 1 winning mare Platelet is the favourite in 2013 Kevin Heffernan Stakes betting markets; with Lankan Rupee ($12), Le Bonsir ($14) and She Can Skate ($14) all priced at double figure odds.