It was clear that something was amiss with four-year-old Zanbagh in the Listed Sandown Cup (3200m) on Saturday after she finished over 10 lengths behind the winner Renew in ninth place (of 11).
Trainer Patrick Payne has since revealed the mare continues to suffer from ongoing foot problems, which has resulted in the dual Oaks runner-up being sent to the spelling paddock.
Payne informed Racing Network of the news on Monday morning after the mare’s 2014 Sandown Cup rider Glen Boss told the trainer how she felt sore and refused to “let go” in the race.
“Bossy came back and said while she felt great and really travelled, as soon as he asked her to go, she felt sore in front and refused to let go,” Payne said.
“She seems to be really good now, has pulled up well, so she’ll go for a spell now,” he added.
Due to the injury, it is likely that Zanbagh will be aimed towards carnivals in either Adelaide or Brisbane next year since they are more likely to have wet tracks. This would mean the mare won’t be seen until May at the earliest.
“We might hold her back until the Adelaide carnival in May when the tracks will be a bit softer,” Payne said.
Even Brisbane after that can produce some wet tracks.
“We’ll just have to see if we can get her feet right next time in.”
Zanbagh finished second in the 2013 Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) as well as the Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) five months later in April. In between that time, the mare also won the Group 3 Keith F. Nolan Classic (1600m) in March.
However she has been plagued with sore heels throughout her entire spring campaign which Payne has been trying to patch up with different shoeing methods to no avail.
The mare’s best result this spring was a minor placing in the Benalla Cup (2046m) before finishing end of the field in both the Group 3 Geelong Cup (2400m) and Group 3 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2600m).
Hopefully a well-earned break in the spelling paddock will help sort out the mare’s injuries and she can return to her former winning glory.