Anthony Cummings has ruled three-year-old colt Smart Missile out of the Melbourne autumn racing carnival due to an injury on his hind leg.
Smart Missile is currently spelling at Gooree Stud in New South Wales after recently sustaining the injury and is expected to be back in work within the next month.
While the Fastnet Rock colt will miss the Melbourne carnival, Cummings is optimistic about the horse’s chances of featuring in the Sydney autumn program.
“We have decided to take the conservative approach and give him the necessary time that he needs to get right,” Cummings said.
“The plan was to go to Melbourne for the big sprints but that is out of the question now.”
Smart Missile’s upcoming campaign will now likely last until the Brisbane winter carnival, with his preparation likely to culminate in the $1 million Stradbroke Handicap in June.
“The advice from the vets is that he should be OK for a return during the Randwick carnival, which opens up the possibility of travelling to Queensland for a race like the Stradbroke,” the trainer said.
Smart Missile shot to fame when he became the only horse to beat Sepoy as a two-year-old.
The young colt then experienced serious misfortune when being scratched from the $2.5 million Golden Slipper field in the very last seconds after casting his leg on the barrier stalls.
Smart Missile’s bad luck continued after he finished second to Manawanui in the $1 million Golden Rose in his next preparation following a chaotic ride from jockey Glen Boss.
The horse went on to finish a disappointing tenth in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes before finishing fifth behind Helmet in the Caulfield Guineas last start.
Smart Missile, who is based at Randwick Racecourse in Sydney, has won three of his six race starts and has earned more than $540,000 in prize money.