Trainer Darren Weir has revealed that imported stayer Puissance De Lune will return to training at his Ballarat stable within the next week.
Puissance De Lune was found to be lame after finishing 12th in the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 26 last year and had surgery on an injured tendon the following week.
Owner Gerry Ryan considered retiring Puissance De Lune to stud, but opted to give the son of Shamardal a chance to return to the races during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival and Weir told TVN this afternoon that the popular grey was extremely close to a return to training.
“He’ll just kick off with some light work at Ballarat and the vets will keep an eye on him and we’ll go from there,” Weir said.
“All going well he’ll stay in work all the way through to the spring.”
Puissance De Lune joined the stable of Weir in 2012, after having four race starts in France, and progressed through the grades impressively; scoring wins at Warrnambool, Sandown and Mornington before stamping himself as a stayer to watch with a dominant eight lengths win in the Listed Bendigo Cup (2400m) on October 31.
The imported galloper was made favourite for the 2013 Melbourne Cup after recording another impressive win in the Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m) on November 10 and dead-heated with Budriguez in his only start during the autumn in the Group 2 Blamey Stakes (1600m) at Flemington.
Puissance De Lune started his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with an impressive win from the back of the field in the Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 17, but was narrowly denied a maiden win at Group 1 level in the Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on September 7.
The six-year-old ran home strongly to finish seventh in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on September 21 and he was narrowly denied at Group 1 level once again in the Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 5 before suffering an injury in the Cox Plate, which ruled him out of the Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m).
Puissance De Lune was rated in the top 200 of the 2013 World’s Best Racehorse Rankings and received a mark of 115 for his performances in the Blamey Stakes, Makybe Diva Stakes and Turnbull Stakes.