Champion Sydney trainer Chris Waller is contemplating scratching Vanbrugh from the Group 2 $200,000 Hyland Race Colours Autumn Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
While Waller hasn’t made up his mind yet, he is considering keeping Vanbrugh home for another week and running him in the Group 2 $400,000 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on February 20.
“I would like to keep him in Sydney. I think he is going well,” Waller said.
“Rosehill Guineas is his race. I don’t know what to do.”
Waller was pleased with Vanbrugh’s work on Tuesday morning but said the Encosta De Lago colt had a good blow on pulling up, and thought he might need another week’s work before heading back to the race track.
“He had a bit of a blow after he galloped on Tuesday. He worked super, but had a bit of a blow,” Waller said.
“Do I give him an extra week and run him in the Hobartville? Probably.”
If Waller was to scratched Vanbrugh from the Autumn Stakes this Saturday and run in the Hobartville Stakes next week, that would give him a two week run into the Group 1 $1m Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 5 and then another fortnight into the Group 1 $600,000 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill.
Waller will still be represented by Devil Hawk in the Autumn Stakes if he withdraws Vanbrugh.
Vanburgh had drawn barrier four in the twelve horse Autumn Stakes field with Blake Shinn booked to ride while Devil Hawk came up with gate five with Hong Kong based Douglas Whyte in the saddle.
Vanbrugh worked his way up through the classes during the Sydney Spring Carnival and completed a hat trick of wins with a victory in the Group 1 $500,000 Moet & Chandon Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Randwick in October last year.
The John O’Shea trained Holler has been installed the favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au for the Autumn Stakes at $3.10 just ahead of Darren Weir’s Mahuta at $3.30.
Vanbrugh is marked at $18 while Devil Hawk is the equal outsider of the field at $41.
Autumn Stakes market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.10 Holler, $3.30 Mahuta, $8 Tarzino, Sailing By, $9 Snoopy, $14 Rageese, $18 Vanbrugh, $21 Extra Choice, $26 Celtic Tiger, $31 Hardern, $41 Solar Impulse, Devil Hawk.