For the first time in four years, Monton won’t contest the Villiers Stakes.
But the veteran racehorse will only break marginally with routine.
He will instead run in a support race at the feature Randwick meeting when he resumes in Saturday’s Listed Razor Sharp Handicap.
The gelding won the Villiers in 2011 and has contested the Group Two mile every year since but trainer Ron Quinton is now resigned to aiming the nine-year-old at lesser targets.
“The 1200 metres will be too sharp for him and basically we’re setting him for a couple of mile handicap races, which he will get a lot of weight in, but we’ll utilise a claim when that time comes,” Quinton said.
“They’re the races he can be competitive in now. The Group races are gone for him.
“There was some consideration given to retiring him but after a long spell after the Scone Cup the connections decided to give him one more crack.”
It wasn’t the only factor in the decision to continue Monton’s racing career.
The winner of 10 of his 61 starts, Monton is $88,000 short of becoming a millionaire.
“I think that was a bit of incentive to the owners to push on a bit further,” Quinton said.
The stable will also start Boss Lane in the Razor Sharp and Quinton says the five-year-old races best at his home track where he won two races last campaign and finished runner-up in a Group Three sprint in August.
Quinton’s initial concerns over barrier 13 have been somewhat allayed by a closer study of the field.
“One of the owners was talking about barriers the day before (they were drawn) and I said don’t start talking about barriers because as soon as you do you draw bad,” he said.
“But when you look at it, a lot of the horses that will go forward are out there with him.”