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Pride Thrilled With Moir Stakes Distance Change

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The Moir Stakes will be held over 1000 metres for the first time since 2006 and trainer Joe Pride believes that the distance change will be perfect for rising sprinter Ball Of Muscle.

Ball Of Muscle will be set for a first-up tilt at the 2015 Moir Stakes during the 2015 Spring Racing Carnival. Photo by: Daniel Costello

Ball Of Muscle will be set for a first-up tilt at the 2015 Moir Stakes during the 2015 Spring Racing Carnival. Photo by: Daniel Costello

Pride revealed last month that he was keen to send Ball Of Muscle to Melbourne for races like the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on October 10 or the Group 2 Caulfield Sprint (1100m) at the same venue a week later in order to avoid clashes with stable star Terravista, but he told AAP that he is now keen to set the Dubawi gelding for a first-up tilt at the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) following the distance change.

“The Moir Stakes is back to 1000 metres this year which is just ideal for him,” Pride said.

“I’ll study the program but he could even go there first-up.

“I was very pleased to see they had changed the distance from 1200 metres.”

Ball Of Muscle earnt a 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign after he finished second in both the 3AW Community Raceday Handicap (1000m) at Flemington on April 11 and the Group 2 Victory Stakes (1200m) at the Gold Coast on April 25 before he scored the biggest race win of his racing career to date in the Group 2 QTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben on May 30.

Another trainer that is pleased with the adjusted 2015 Spring Racing Carnival is Mick Price, who is now keen to head to the Schillaci Stakes with Lankan Rupee.

The Schillaci Stakes will be worth $400,000 and run over 1100 metres in 2015, which Price believes makes it the ideal target for Lankan Rupee on the path to the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) – a path that allows Lankan Rupee to miss the Moir Stakes and possibly the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley during his 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign.

“The Schillaci fits into that sprint program a bit better now, being 1100 metres and weight-for-age,” Price told Racing.com.

“It suits us, anyway.

“He’ll run in the Schillaci on the way to the Darley Classic.”

Lankan Rupee started his autumn campaign with an outstanding victory in the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 21, but he found with bone bruising following his subpar performances in both the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on March 14 and the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on April 6.

About The Author

Thomas Hackett

Thomas is a passionate and opinionated racing journalist and punter who has been obsessed with horse racing since he backed Saintly to win the 1996 Melbourne Cup. An international racing enthusiast, he has his finger on the pulse of racing news not just from Australia but all around the world.

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