Sir John Hawkwood will stay in Sydney to run in the Tattersalls Cup on New Year’s Day rather than travel to Melbourne for the Bagot Handicap.
The stayer was given top weight for both Listed races but trainer David Vandyke and owner Paul Fudge have decided the float trip from Warwick Farm to Randwick is a better option than sending him down the Hume Highway to run at Flemington.
Vandyke said although the Christmas Cup winner was at a disadvantage against the others in the Tattersalls Cup at Randwick, he was better off at home.
“It’s a long trip and we decided to keep him in familiar surrounds,” Vandyke said.
“I do think with 59 kilos he’s at a disadvantage with all the other horses on 54-1/2 or less.
“But he’s earned the weight so I can’t complain too much about it.
“And he seemed to enjoy it last time and was a happy horse before and after the race so we’ll keep him here.
“He has won with 63 kilos in Europe and he might get a bit of give in the track at Randwick which will help him.”
The Sydney Cup is the long-term aim for Sir John Hawkwood who will have a short break after Saturday before beginning his campaign.
Instead of gaining more entries with the extension of Tatt’s Cup nominations, the race now has one less with trainer Anthony Cummings withdrawing San Telmo on Tuesday morning leaving a possible field of nine.
San Telmo ran second to Tatt’s Cup entry Zatopaz in a 2400m-race at Warwick Farm a week ago and Cummings decided it was too soon for him to step up to stakes class.
The Vandyke-trained Husson Choice ran 10th of 12 in the Warwick Farm race but will take his place in the Tatts Cup.
“We’ll give him one more crack at his pet distance of 2400 metres and hope to see some positive signs,” Vandyke said.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au