Winx to have final Cox Plate lead-up race at Flemington

Source: Brendan Cormick – The Australian /

In a surprise development, Winx will go to Melbourne and have her final Cox Plate lead-up race at Flemington next month.

Trainer Chris Waller has announced today that it is his intention run Winx in the $500,000 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 7. It will be her first start at the historic racecourse.

It was considered a sure bet that the mighty mare would complete her campaign in Sydney, which had revised its spring carnival dates, race conditions and prizemoney levels — some would suggest catering to Winx.

“The sole reason for running here (Flemington) as the most likely option is simply based on the timing of the current program, which will be three weeks from (last Saturday’s) George Main and the Turnbull Stakes and another three weeks into the Cox Plate, the fifth run of her campaign,” the statement read.

“Whilst this is her intended path, if she were not to run in the Turnbull it would be my intention to run in the Craven Plate on October 14 at Royal Randwick before heading to Melbourne for the Cox Plate.”

Waller also advised that, after consultation with jockey Hugh Bowman, Winx will not race with ear muffs. They were added after she reared in the barriers and she came out a distant last in the Warwick Stakes at Randwick in August.

Winx will be chasing her 21st win in a row in the Turnbull Stakes.