English visitors Pengali Pavilion and Polarisation are still in the mix to compete in the re-running of the Group 1 $2m Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) on April 22 at Randwick.
The Sydney Cup was abandoned mid race last Saturday after the Lindsay Park trained Almoonqith and the Chris Waller’s veteran stayer Who Shot Thebarman fell just past the winning post on the first lap of the track and Racing NSW along with the Australian Turf Club have made arrangements for the Sydney Cup to be re-run on Saturday week.
Polarisation was actually first across the finish line after jockey Corey Brown didn’t receive the message that the race was being called off and Penglai Pavilion with Kerrin McEvoy in the saddle also completed the 3200m course to finish unofficially third.
Godolphin’s English trainer Charlie Appleby said that if Penglai Pavilion and Polarisation get through their run over the 3200m last Saturday okay and if assistant trainer James Ferguson reports back to him that they have progressed well during the week, they are likely to take their place in the second running of the Sydney Cup.
“James Ferguson said both horses seem fine (Sunday), but we will monitor them this week before deciding whether to run. There will be no rush,” Appleby said in a statement.
“This is not an ideal situation, but we are taking a serious look at having another crack at the race.
“The main consideration is the horses themselves. If they are bouncing again by Friday, then there is every chance they will run on April 22.
“If they are not, then we will bring them back home to the UK and wait for the Melbourne spring.”
Penglai Pavilion and Polarisation are currently stabled at the Canterbury Park Quarantine Centre and Racing NSW has been granted permission from the Department of Agriculture to proceed with the Easter Monday meeting at Canterbury Park on 17 April 2017.
The two English stayers preparation will receive minimum interruption and they will be allowed to be stabled in special isolation while the Canterbury Park meeting goes ahead.
The new Sydney Cup field will be limited to fourteen runners, firstly made up of horses from the original field who want to go around again plus supplementary entries to make up the numbers.
“We wanted to give all entrants a chance to compete for the $2 million and we believe 22 April strikes a balance between varying views of owners and trainers, whilst achieving a competitive field size for punters and racegoers,” ATC chief executive Darren Pearce said.
“Weights for the race will be the same as those which applied to the original final acceptors on Tuesday, 4 April 2017. Any supplementary entries will be weighted by the Racing NSW handicapping panel with a limit weight of 51.5kg being applied,” a statement from Racing New South Wales said.
“The closing date for supplementary entries is midday on Monday, 17 April 2017 with race acceptances due by 9am on Wednesday, 19 April 2017.”