Golden Slipper winner Mossfun could make a late Spring Carnival appearance if she recovers from a virus that is sweeping through Sydney stables.
Team Hawkes had sent Mossfun to Melbourne in July to get some experience in the left handed way of going but was due to commence her Spring Campaign in either the Group 3 $125,000 San Domenico Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill on Saturday or the Group 2 $175,000 Silver Shadow Stakes(1200m) at Randwick the following week.
While in Melbourne Mossfun finished second to 2012 Thousand Guineas winner Commanding Jewel in an 800m jump out at Flemington on August 11.
John Hawkes, who trains in partnership with sons Michael and Wayne, was hopeful that the Mossman filly would recover in time to make an appearance towards the end of the Melbourne Spring Carnival.
“It’s a shame it’s happened but better it’s happened now than late September-early October,” Hawkes told The Daily Telegraph.
“We’ll give her the time to get over it and then look towards later in the spring.”
A much anticipated rematch between Godolphin’s last season top two year old Earthquake and Mossfun in the Silver Shadow Stakes is now off the table with Hawkes unable to give a definite date for her return to the racetrack.
The clash between the two fillies would have been a highlight at Randwick next week after they fought out the finish of the Group 1 $3.5m Tooheys New Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill during the Sydney Autumn Carnival with Mossfun getting the better of Earthquake in the final fifty metres.
Ironically Earthquake was the one on that occasion who had to overcome the effects of a virus in the week leading up to the Golden Slipper.
The Group 1 $1m Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on September 13 is now out of the question and a start in the Group 1 $500,000 Schweppes Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield on October 16 is also looking doubtful.
But the Group 1 $500,000 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on the first day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival on November 1 could be a possibility if Mossfun makes a complete recovery in plenty of time.
Reports from the Godolphin stable are good for Earthquake who has pleased with two private barrier trials at their Agnes Banks establishment and the Blue Diamond Stakes winner is on track to resume in the Silver Shadow Stakes.
Godolphin’s racing manager John Walsh said that stable rider Kerrin McEvoy seemed like her old self in her trial win on August 8.
“Kerrin McEvoy was very pleased with her,” Walsh told Sky Racing HQ.
“At this stage we will head towards the Silver Shadow over 1200.
“That is where we plan on kicking her off.”