Ortensia Forced To Stay Put

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Ortensia will now wait for the Melbourne Autumn Carnival after her preparation was disrupted by a virus

There will be no New Zealand excursion for Ortensia this time around with the electric mare forced out with a virus.

Connections were hoping to run her in the Group 1 Railway Stakes and the Telegraph Handicap but will now wait for the Melbourne autumn.

Trainer Paul Messara says the virus wasn’t serious but enough to throw her preparation out of whack.

“She’s had a minor setback but it is more a timing issue than the setback itself,” he said.

“We couldn’t work her when we wanted to and she needed to have a strong gallop this week.

“That didn’t lead in to having her fit and ready to go so we’ve pulled the pin.”

It’s understood she probably contracted the illness during the trip back from Perth to the east coast.

Ortensia became a Group 1 champion this preparation winning the Winterbottom Stakes at Ascot last month.

She won’t be given much of a break before she’s back at the top level either with the Melbourne autumn coming up very quickly.

Messara doesn’t know exactly what he’ll target at this stage, just that he’ll be avoiding a certain B. Caviar.

“Plan B is probably to head towards one of the big races down in Melbourne,” Messara said.

“One that Black Caviar isn’t in.”

Ortensia was retired to stud earlier in the year with connections then deciding to keep her racing, a decision that’s already paid huge dividends.

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