For James Cummingsthe retirement of State of rest don’t release the pressure Anamoe as the four-year-old star aims to Cox plate redemption.
Anamoe was controversially beaten by Irish raider State Of Rest in last year’s Cox Plate; a short second on the line and still second after an unsuccessful protest against the winner.
The re-match had been the most anticipated race of the spring but the scans commissioned by Victoria Race vets discovered heat in one of his fetlocks and swabbed his papers for the Cox plate. State Of Rest have retired and will drop to Ireland before holding a season in the northern hemisphere.
It will come to Newgate Farm in the valley of the hunters for the start of the southern hemisphere breeding season in the middle of next year.
Boss of Newgate Henry Field said State Of Rest’s retirement was “really disappointing for the owners” and Cummings was also disappointed that Anamoe didn’t get his chance to pit the lightweight Cox Plate against the Irish globetrotter.
Anamoe continues its quest for Cox Plate in the George Main Stakes at Randwick Saturday week.
He scored a brilliant first victory in the recent winx stakes.
“State Of Rest was a fantastic horse; Group 1 wins America, Australia, Francethe UK…” Cummings reflected on State Of Rest.
“It was really good for ‘business’ that we raced so well against him last year and we were looking forward to competing again in the Cox Plate.”
A key rival on the sidelines made Cummings hardly less concerned about the dangers ahead for Anamoe.
Coach Annabel Neasham confirmed this morning that Zaaki would open his Cox Plate account in the Tram pickets at Randwick on Saturday. Zaaki was favorite for last year’s Cox Plate but suffered a setback at 11e hour.
Cummings said he was aware of Zaaki, Profondo and others this season.
“I will be watching Tramway, Chelmsford and Feehan very closely this Saturday,” he said.
“There will be good horses everywhere and it is also for emerging horses that we have to worry. Something will come out of the woodwork.
“I expect Zaaki to run very well first and he is a serious horse. Mr. Brightside has come a long way. I am very suspicious of Profondo and I am stunned.
Cummings said Anamoe has thrived since the Winx.
“He absorbed the race very, very well,” he said. “He’s been shooting the breeze since then and we’ll probably start to strengthen him next week. We’ve got him where we want him. He’s in the zone.
Cummings said he has grown frustrated with the track condition reports from the industry, saying it would be easier to lay out a course with horses like Anamoe if the track reports focused on the track. likely condition of the track on Saturday rather than their condition mid-week.
“That would make things a lot easier,” he said. “I would rather know if it could be a good 4 on Saturday rather than a soft 7 now.”
Anamoe will travel to melbourne after the George Main.
The options are the Undergrowth stakes (September 25) or Potency and Power Stakes (October 8).
James McDonald reportedly first dibs on Anamoe in Melbourne but was not booked beyond the George Main.