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Winning Rupert hopeful for Spring Carnival return

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Trainer Bjorn Baker is hoping that Winning Rupert will be fit for the 2017 Melbourne Spring Carnival after suffering a chip to his knee following his fourth in the $2m Gold Coast Magic Millions 3yo Guineas (1400m) at the Gold Coast last Saturday.

Winning Rupert, above, will be set for the Melbourne Spring Carnival following knee surgery. Photo by Daniel Costello.

Winning Rupert, above, will be set for the Melbourne Spring Carnival following knee surgery. Photo by Daniel Costello.

Winning Rupert was undefeated from five race starts in the lead up to the Magic Millions 3yo Guineas and was sent out as the $1.65 favourite but the Written Tycoon three year old failed to run on in the straight after settling just behind the leaders.

Winning Rupert had led at his previous three starts but jockey Jeff Lloyd was happy to take a sit behind the pace from barrier five.

The Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott trained Global Glamour ($8.50) dashed to the front on the home turn before being collared by $101 shot Flying Jess who was able to claim the first prize with Eckstein (12) filling third spot in front of Winning Rupert.

Baker said that Winning Rupert will have to have surgery to remove the bone chip and is looking forward to preparing the brilliant colt for the major Melbourne Sprints in the Spring.

“He is fine. It is in the top joint and is generally fairly forgiving. The prognoses is excellent and it just means that we are going to give him probably three months off,” Baker told RSN’s Racing Ahead.

“We will find out a bit more once the surgeon goes in.”

“He will come back hopefully after that better than ever. He had a pretty torrid campaign and maybe it was just one run too many.”

“He has ability, he is fast and when you go that fast you put extra pressure on the joints.”

“I guess it is something to look forward to next Spring, probably Melbourne’s gain. We will be looking at an early Melbourne Spring campaign.

“It is just a matter of getting him right and getting back to the track and for the foreseeable future we will probably leave him to the sprint trips.”

Even though Baker was disappointed with the result in the Magic Millions 3yo Guineas, the Warwick Farm trainer was still content with Winning Rupert’s Brisbane Summer campaign.

“It is always a hard race up to 1400m. I don’t think he was quite at his best. He had a soft run in transit and he didn’t really flatten or accelerate like he can,” Baker said.

“It has been a really successful preparation anyway.”

Winning Rupert was a winner at his previous three Brisbane outings and as well and picking up the winning cheques, also pocketed a $500,000 Summer Crown Bonus for winning the 3yo 1200m 3yo Plate at Eagle Farm on December 3, the Listed $100,000 Delfina’s Bistro Gold Edition Plate (1200m) at Doomben on December 17 and the Group 3 $200,000 Vo Rogue Plate (1300m) at Eagle Farm on December 31.

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.

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