Trainer Chris Waller is not concerned that his super star Winx has to race with synthetic hoof filler when she chases her seventeenth straight win in the Group 1 $4m Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on day two of ‘The Championships’ on Saturday.
Waller said the addition of synthetic hoof filler to the inside of Winx’s off fore hoof was only a precaution and won’t affect her performance in her quest to claim a twelfth Group 1 trophy.
“It gives the farrier a bit more hoof to bang a nail into. If you don’t (use it) you can get movement and they can pull a shoe off,” Waller told AAP.
Racing New South Wales Stewards released the following report outlining the reasons for the world’s best race horse having to race with hoof filler.
“Please be advised that Winx will race at Royal Randwick this Saturday with a small amount of Synthetic Hoof Filler applied to the inside of the off fore hoof.
“The stable farrier has advised that the hoof filler was applied as a precautionary measure only to give added support to the hoof wall and was applied to the mare on Friday, 31st March 2017, prior to Winx then completing a public gallop between races at Royal Randwick on Saturday, 1st April 2017.”
Winx didn’t show any signs of discomfort when she galloped in between races at Randwick last Saturday with The Daily Telegraph’s Brad Davidson clocking her to run 1.05.13 secs for the 1000m hit out and winding up the last 600m in 36.17 secs.
Waller was happy with the exhibition gallop as was Winx’s regular race day rider Hugh Bowman.
“Hugh (Bowman) said she loves it and she likes the atmosphere,” Waller said.
“What we have done with her in the past with three-week gaps between runs is always give her an exhibition gallop. She thrives on it and even prior to the Cox Plate I think we took her to Moonee Valley twice.”
“It’s just a question of giving her a day out and blowing the cobwebs out.”
“With three weeks between her last run and the Queen Elizabeth, it’s important for everyone including her to get rid of the nerves.
“It helps keep her fit without having to punch her out.
Winx has drawn barrier three in a final field of nine for the Queen Elizabeth Stakes with Bowman in the saddle again and she is certain to start at long odds on again after starting well into the red at her three Autumn Carnival outings this campaign.
Winx was sent out as the $1.14 favourite when she won the Group 2 $250,000 The Star Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on February 13 and followed that up at $1.22 when she scored a comfortable win in the Group 1 $600,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on February 25.
The mighty mare was then sent out as the $1.26 favourite for the Group 1 $1m China Horse Club George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on March 18 and didn’t let her followers down with a seven and a quarter lengths win over the Kris Lees trained Le Romain.
Betting at Ladbrokes.com.au on Wednesday have Winx as the $1.09 favourite to keep her winning momentum going in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes while the John O’Shea trained Hartnell is the closest to her in the market order at $11.