Sessions Could Miss Concorde Stakes

By: Thomas Hackett
September 5th, 2014

Sessions is available at Concorde Stakes odds of $4 and has been the best backed runner in betting markets for the Group 3 event, but Godolphin Racing Manager Jason Walsh has revealed that the Lonhro entire will be scratched from the race if the Royal Randwick track continues to be rain affected.

Sessions is no certainty to contest the Concorde Stakes at Royal Randwick this weekend.

Sessions is no certainty to contest the Concorde Stakes at Royal Randwick this weekend. Photo by: Steve Hart

Sessions impressed onlookers with a smart barrier trial performance over 795 metres behind Rain Affair at Warwick Farm on August 15 and Walsh told Racing Ahead that trainer John O’Shea has been thrilled with the progress of the five-year-old, but said that the stable are not keen to run Sessions on a wet surface and may opt to save the talented sprinter for the Group 2 The Shorts (1100m) at Royal Randwick on September 20.

“Sessions is always a horse that shows us a lot on the track and in his trials and his progression this time through has been nothing short of fantastic,” Walsh said.

“He had a very impressive trial at Warwick Farm a couple of weeks back and we are very pleased with him, but he is an unlikely runner if this rain continues.

“We have spoken to Navesh at Randwick this morning and at this stage they are saying slow at best.

“We have certainly got an opinion that he is much better on top of the ground, so Sessions will be unlikely if the track is particularly rain affected.

“In terms of his program we would probably trial him on Monday and head towards The Shorts in a couple of weeks.”

If Sessions is removed from the Concorde Stakes field than Safeguard will be left to fly the flag for the Godolphin operation and Walsh is confident that the Exceed And Excel entire can perform well in the Group 3 event.

Safeguard has not recorded a race win since he took out the Group 3 Vain Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield over a year ago, but he performed fairly in three starts during the 2014 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival and Walsh believes that the four-year-old is close to returning to his best form.

“We are particularly pleased with him,” Walsh said.

“He had a return to form of sorts in Queensland, showing the sort of form that he had as a young horse, and to our eye he is doing all the right things at home.

“He looks in great order and he had the benefit of a Queensland preparation under his belt.

“He is very forward and he has trialled very well behind some well performed and well-credentialed horses.

“It is my view that he is back to the sort of form that he showed as a juvenile.

“We are expecting a very forward performance from him.”

Safeguard is currently available at 2014 Concorde Stakes odds of $12 and he is on the seventh line of Concorde Stakes betting markets.

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