The Melbourne Cup dream is over for English trainer Andrew Balding after his stayer Lord Van Percy had to be scratched from the Group 3 $300,000 Lexus Stakes (2500m) at Flemington today.
Lord Van Percy was declared a late scratching this morning after being found to be lame in the off fore leg.
The Ciaron Maher trained Marksmanship is also out of the Lexus Stakes leaving a field of eleven to run.
Balding had been hoping to secure a start in Tuesday’s Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington by winning the Lexus Stakes, but now those plans are done.
Balding had been upbeat about Lord Van Percy’s chance of winning today and going on to compete in the $6m two mile handicap in three days time.
Lord Van Percy was well in the betting at around the $7.50 mark when he came out of the Lexus Stakes causing a few minor changes in the market order.
The Darren Weir trained Signoff remains the short priced favourite at $2.60 with Ladbrokes.com.au with La Amistad shortening into $6.50 if front of Big Memory at $7, Caravan Rolls On at $8 and Let’s Make Adeal at $9.
Except for More Than Sacred, any one of the remaining ten Lexus Stakes runners can make the final field of the Melbourne Cup by winning today.
The Flemington track for today’s meeting is rated a good 3 with more showers forecast for throughout the day with the rail in the true position for the entire course.