Trainer Kris Lees has aborted plans to run Le Romain in the Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 11.
Le Romain has been troubled with a hoof problem and Lees said that he was just running out of time to have the three year old fit enough to run a tough 1400m in the Stradbroke Handicap.
The Hard Spun gelding was scheduled to run in a barrier trial at Newcastle last Monday, but Lees had to scratch him because of the hoof issue and he has also abandoned plans to run in a 1050m trial at Randwick on Friday.
“He had a minor foot issue that forced him out of the trial on Monday and I wouldn’t be happy enough to trial this week,” Lees told racing.com.
“We’ve basically run out of time with him to get to the Stradbroke.
“He’d be short of a run with no trial going in to a race on Saturday week and it just wouldn’t be ideal for the horse.”
Lees will now let Le Romain get over his foot problems before preparing him for the Spring with the Group 1 $1m The Star Epsom (1600m) at Randwick as one of his main Spring targets.
“He got a Group 1 this campaign already, we will just have a good rest now and I’ll aim him towards the Epsom,” Lees said.
Le Romain rose to prominence during the Sydney Autumn Carnival with an upset win in the Group 1 $1m Girvan Waugh Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 5 when he beat the odds on favourite Press Statement.
But he was unable to repeat that performance at his next start when seventh to Tarzino in the Group 1 $600,000 Sky Racing Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill two weeks later.
The Ciaron Maher trained Azkadellia is at the top of the market order for the Stradbroke Handicap at $4.40 with Ladbrokes.com.au, ahead of Darren Weir’s Black Heart Bart at $7 and BTC Cup winner Malaguerra at $8.
The Chris Waller trained Delectation and John O’Shea’s promising filly Ghisoni share the next line of betting at $11.
Early market order for the Stradbroke Handicap at Ladbrokes.com.au: $4.40 Azkadellia, $7 Black Heart Bart, $8 Malaguerra, $11 Ghisoni, Delectation, $13 Artlee, Dothraki, $15 Fell Swoop, Music Magnate, $17 Counterattack, Japonisme, Kaepernick, Rageese, Takedown, $19 Sold For Song.