Trainer Mick Price has confirmed that Lankan Rupee will return to the races in the 2015 Schillaci Stakes at Caulfield on October and will not contest the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley a week later.
Lankan Rupee returned to the races in the Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival and he went on to contest the Moir Stakes and the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) ahead of the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m), but Price told Racing Ahead this morning that his star sprinter will follow a different path during the 2015 Spring Racing Carnival.
Price said that Lankan Rupee will start his campaign in the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on October 10 before he returns to Group 1 level for the Manikato Stakes at Monee Valley on October 23 and the Darley Classic at Flemington on November 7 before a potential trip to Hong Kong for the Group 1 Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) in December.
“It was disappointing to see him not win those races again, but he is back and he will probably run in the Schillachi, the Manikato and the VRC Sprint,” Price said.
“He is in good condition and I am very happy with him.
“I think that (the Moir Stakes) is about four weeks before the Schillaci and it doesn’t quite fit in with what I want to do.
“I probably don’t need to be banging him around 1000 metres at Moonee Valley.
“Moonee Valley is not his favourite course, but I am not going to miss a $1 million Manikato and we are sticking with the VRC Sprint, so I think they will be his three runs.
“That would be a discussion and we will leave the door open for that one (the Hong Kong International Sprint).”
Lankan Rupee started his 2015 Melbourne Festival Of Racing campaign with a dominant three lengths victory over Brazen Beau and Deep Field in the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 21, but he was unable to replicate that form in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at the same venue on March 14 and the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on April 6.
Despite his inconsistent form in the past 12 months, Lankan Rupee remains the highest-rated Australian-trained horse in the field and he currently sits in eighth in the World’s Best Racehorse Rankings.