There is a stud-studded line-up set for the Flemington jumpouts on Friday, with many of Lindsay Park’s fastest and finest on show as well as the equal-fifth-best horse in the world, Hartnell.
Hartnell, who has an international rating of 123, will appear in the opening 800-metre heat against Lindsay Park’s Newmarket Handicap winner Redkirk Warrior, as well as the flying Flemington filly Heatherly.
It will be Hartnell’s first public test on his way to a first-up run in two weeks in the Group 2 Lawrence Stakes over 1400m at Caulfield.
Apart from Redkirk Warrior, the Lindsay Park team intend trialling Goodwood winner Vega Magic as well as Sheidel, Tulip, Formality and Black Caviar’s daughter, Oscietra.
Brad Rawiller will miss the first two metro meetings of the season, after incurring a seven-meeting suspension at Warrnambool on Tuesday.
Rawiller’s first winner of the 2017-18 season, Prince Ziggy, also led to a rare sanction for the hoop, with stewards factoring in his ‘excellent record’ when penalising him for careless riding in the Melbourne Marriott Maiden Plate (1400m).
He has three rides at Racing.com Park on Thursday, before he sits out from Friday to Thursday, August 10, meaning Rawiller’s first city meeting of the new season will be at Flemington on August 12, featuring the running of the Group 3 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m).
Last season, Rawiller finished equal-ninth with Regan Bayliss in the Melbourne premiership with 32 winners.
Another of Darren Weir’s go-to men, John Allen, received a severe reprimand for his ride on Silver Stratum in the last event at Warrnambool.
Silver Stratum came very wide in the home straight, but Allen explained to stewards he felt the superior ground was down the centre of the track.
However, the Irishman was reprimanded for failing to ride out Silver Stratum to the finishing post.