The race morning scratching of Royal Hauntfrom the Group 3 $150,000 C S Hayes Stakes (1400m) at Flemington today has seen a huge restructure of the betting market and has left the race without a genuine leader.
Royal Haunt’s owners Contract Racing Pty Ltd struck a deal which will see the three year old sold to Hong Kong interests leading to his withdrawal from today’s feature for the three year old colts and geldings.
The Peter Moody trained gelding lead most of the way in winning the Listed $120,000 TROA Supports National Jockeys’ Trust Manfred Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield two weeks ago but with him out of the race today, the pace making role is up for grabs.
The Greg Eurell trained Hosting had to chase Royal Haunt all the way and with him out of the way today could end up being the front runner.
Eurell had a big opinion of Hosting going into the Manfred Stakes but was happy to get that run out of the way after his stable mate Force Command knocked him out of second place on the line.
The Cranbourne trainer had been hoping to take a sit behind Royal Haunt again but Chris Symons will be looking for another leader if he decides to ease back.
“I’m just glad his first-up run is out of the way now,” Eurell said.
“He’s come through it very well. He did get really fired-up behind the barriers too, so we had a few things not perfect there first-up.”
“Hosting has drawn a good gate so that gives us a chance to tuck him in behind and settle a bit, hopefully then run on nicely,” Eurell said before Royal Haunt’s scratching.
Peter Snowden’s three year old Albrecht has been installed the new favourite at $3.90 following the withdrawal of Royal Haunt who was the $2.40 favourite.
Philippi, the winner of three from three is now a $4.40 chance resuming from a spell with the Bart Cummings trained Lunar Rise at $5 and Hosting at $6.50 and stablemate Force Command at $8.50.