Trainer Mick Price will send his veteran sprinter Lankan Rupee to Adelaide on Saturday to run in the Group 3 $120,000 David R Coles AM Spring Stakes (1200m) at Morphettville and bypass a run in the B.P. Lawrence Stakes at Caulfield.

Lankan Rupee, above, will head to Adelaide to run in the Spring Stakes at Morphettville. Photo by Sarah Ebbett.

Lankan Rupee, above, will head to Adelaide to run in the Spring Stakes at Morphettville. Photo by Sarah Ebbett.

Lankan Rupee was also nominated for the weight for age Group 2 $200,000 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) on Saturday but Price is reluctant to run the eight year old over 1400m second up after having only one run back from an extended layoff because of injury.

“The best interest of the horse is to take him to the 1200m. We’ve come this far,” Price told racing.com.

“I was going to take him to the 1200m, and bring him back for the Memsie.”

Price had planned to step Lankan Rupee up to the 1400m trip this campaign at his second run back in the B.P. Lawrence Stakes but when the Group 3 $150,000 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) was put back a week to be run at Sandown on August 6 after being cancelled at Caulfield the previous Saturday, Price didn’t think there was enough time to prepare the five times Group 1 winner to tackle the longer journey.

The 1200m of the Spring Stakes suits Lanken Rupee better at this stage of his comeback but he is in danger of missing out on a run in the Group 1 $1m Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 2 even if he wins.

Racing Victoria’s executive general manager of racing Greg Carpenter revealed that the conditions of the Memsie Stakes state that any horse that has failed to collect $90,000 in an individual performance in the last two years will be ruled out of the ballot if the field exceeds the race limit.

While Lankan Rupee has earned in excess of $4 million from his eleven wins from twenty-seven starts, he hasn’t been in the winner’s circle since claiming the $300,000 winning cheque in Group 1 $500,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington during the 2015 Melbourne Autumn Carnival.

Lankan Rupee has been sparing raced since then and among his minor prizeomoney cheques was the $27,000 he picked for running second to Ability in the Bletchingly Stakes.

“With that rule of racing to do with 24 months … you can look it up if you can find it, and he might not get a run in the Memsie,” Price said.

“If he doesn’t get a run in the Memsie, well then it’s just bad luck.

“I don’t think second-up after such a long time – we’ve nursed him back – I need to stick one up him for the 1400m, and put him up there, and get a really hard run out of him and ‘make sure we win at all costs’-type thing.

“I reckon a trip away would do him good.

“He can still get a run in the Memsie if there’s less than 16. If he does, he does, if he doesn’t, he doesn’t.

“I’ve got to speak to Mr Yaseen (owner Muzaffar Yaseen, of Teeley Assets Ltd) and explain that rule and see what happens.”

The trip to Adelaide is not going to be easy either with the Lindsay Park trained Vega Magic among the nineteen nominations.

The former West Australian trained sprinter has only had one run for David and Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig for a win in the Group 1 $1m Darley Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville on May 20 and the Lindsay Park Team has also nominated Keen Array and Risque for the Spring Stakes.

The Darren Weir trained Black Heart Bart and Godolphins’s Hartnell are sharing the early favouritism for the B.P. Lawrence Stakes at $3.20 each.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.