Chilean import bound for US
Costly Chilean purchase Prince Albert is odds-on to continue his racing career in America.
A disappointed Lawrie Fownes, who had high hopes for the Argentinian-bred galloper, confirmed the five-year-old had bled after finishing second in a trial at Happy Valley yesterday.
'I feel very sorry about it all. The owner [Rusi Shroff] is a lovely man and we were so keen to get him a good one this time around,' said Fownes.
'The biggest problem with buying from outside the main racing centres is knowing, or not knowing, what they may have been on.
'This fellow's form was exceptional, and mostly on grass, too, which is a bit unusual for down that way. But we have had no luck at all.
'He was working well early last season and then we had to turn him away for the season when he split a hoof.' From that point on, the long-serving Fownes has tried everything to get Prince Albert to his peak but guessed some time ago that he might be bleeding internally.
'Nothing much showed up when we scoped him, just a trace or two. But now he's bled and, frankly, I was really half-waiting for it to happen,' he said.
Shroff, one of the longest-standing members of the Jockey Club, will be asked by Fownes to consider sending the horse to the West Coast of America where he can race on anti-bleeding agent lasix.
'It's the obvious answer because Prince Albert has undoubted ability but he'll never be able to show it without that type of medication.
'Fastabob, who was with John Moore, had success in America when he was sent there after bleeding in Hong Kong,' said Fownes.
In stable news yesterday, Courage Star, who has been backed and beaten on a couple of occasions, moved from Peter Ho to David Hill.