After a five-month absence following a foot abscess
, Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner Texas Red stayed on to claim second after a wide route around the turn in the Dwyer Stakes.
A foot abscess
prevents Classic winner Bayern from joining the party - better on paper than any number of Grade 1s - but his presence still looms large as his trainer Bob Baffert bids to gatecrash the affair with the formidable hoppertunity, who should not be overlooked in a nine-runner field for an enthralling $500,000 contest.
A foot abscess
ruled Azamour out of the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, and the Currabeg trainer added: "In the event that was a blessing because we would have taken him out on the day because of the ground, so it saved all that hassle.
With Noel Meade deciding not to r isk Apac he Stronghold because of a foot abscess
and his other intended representative, Very Wood, forced to miss the race having been off his feed, it left Azorian as the sole challenger to Briar Hill and punters were left with little option but to keep their hands in their pockets.
By a strange coincidence, the trainer's Baraka, six-length winner of the Lingfield Oaks Trial last month, was pulled out of the Prix de Diane (French Oaks) at Chantilly yesterday, also suffering from a foot abscess
He had a hold-up with a foot abscess
a while ago but is fine now.
We were aiming him at Royal Ascot but he got a bad foot abscess
which kept him off for a while.
Afterwards Oxx conceded the Aga Khan's runner, whose build-up to yesterday's race was hampered by a foot abscess
, would have to improve to triumph at Epsom on June 7.
But, after developing a foot abscess
over the weekend, Kazzia has been scratched from the race.
He was bought from Germany in the summer of 2011 specifically to run in the Cup, but a foot abscess
prior to the Caulfield Cup - his prep race - threatened to derail his Melbourne bid.