St Ge­orge to stay in Europe

Mercury (Hobart) - - SPORT - LEO SCH­LINK

OR­DER Of St Ge­orge will not start in the Mel­bourne Cup.

The gun Ir­ish stayer will be aimed at the Prix de l’Arc de Tri­om­phe early next month.

Owner Lloyd Wil­liams con­firmed plans for the dual Ir­ish St Leger win­ner af­ter Al­mandin’s stun­ning JRA Tro­phy vic­tory at Flem­ing­ton on Saturday.

Wil­liams said Al­mandin had pulled up well af­ter his ef­fort­less tri­umph and would prob­a­bly next run in the Bart Cum­mings — a race he won last year be­fore snar­ing the Mel­bourne Cup.

Con­cerns over track con­di­tions and travel stress are the fac­tors be­hind the de­ci­sion to keep Or­der Of St Ge­orge in Europe.

Given 58kg in the Mel­bourne Cup, his ab­sence means Hart­nell, a dis­tant third in last year’s Cup be­hind Al­mandin, will be top­weight with 57.5kg.

With a record five Cups in his keep­ing, Wil­liams still has a string of Flem­ing­ton as­pi­rants, in­clud­ing Crocodile Rock and Aloft who filled the plac­ings be­hind Al­mandin.

He said that trio, along with Grand­duke­of­tus­cany, Bondi Beach and Hans Hol­bein, were likely to head to the Bart Cum­mings.

Al­mandin is now a clear-cut TAB $8 favourite to win suc­ces­sive Cups — a feat achieved by only four horses in the 155- year his­tory of the race.

Wil­liams in­di­cated Rekin­dling, trained by Ai­dan O’Brien’s son Joseph, could travel to Aus­tralia af­ter a fine fourth in the Wil­liam Hill St Leger at Don­caster.

Rekin­dling is a $51 chance for the Mel­bourne Cup.

Craig Wil­liams has de­clared Ad­mire Deus his pre­ferred Cup ride af­ter part­ner­ing the Ja­panese star in trackwork.

“He’s a nice, re­ally solid horse,” Wil­liams said.

“He’s got great form. He’s the third-high­est stay­ing horse that they’ve got in Ja­pan and I was de­lighted with the feel that he’s given me.”

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