Veteran stayer Manighar impressed in a trackwork gallop at Caulfield this morning and will start in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) next weekend.
Manighar started his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival strongly, finishing sixth in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) and Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m), but performed poorly in the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington last Saturday.
The Linamix gelding was found to be suffering from a virus after the race but trainer Peter Moody told News Limited that the virus had now cleared and the seven-year-old was a certain starter in the $2.5 million handicap event next weekend.
“Very pleased with the work and his condition,” Moody said.
“He’ll go into the Cup.”
Manighar will be competing in the Caulfield Cup for the third time in his racing career but the first time since he joined Moody’s stable at the end of the 2011 Spring Racing Carnival.
The Triple Group 1 winner finished fifth behind Descarado in the 2010 edition of the race and loomed as the winner when he finished fourth behind Southern Speed the following year.
Manighar will carry the top weight of 58kg in the Caulfield Cup unless the Macedon Lodge stable of Lloyd Williams changes their plans with Melbourne Cup winner Green Moon.
Williams told Racing Victoria stewards early this week that Green Moon would not contest the Caulfield Cup and would run in the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) instead but the preparation of the Montjeu entire hit a roadblock when he was found with a spiked temperature and scratched from the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m).
Williams told TVN that he is now unsure whether Green Moon will have his next race start in the Caulfield Cup or Cox Plate and said he will wait until he sees how the six-year-old recovers before making a decision.
“I might just go straight to the Cox Plate, it’s too early to ask me,” Williams said.
“It’s not impossible, but it is not my preferred option.
“He seems to be better today, but it usually takes 24-48 hours to see how they are.”
If Green Moon runs in the Caulfield Cup he will carry the top weight of 58kg while Manighar will carry 56.5kg.