Summons for Court Connections
A raft of nominations for the Anzac Day meet at Randwick Kensington forced Goulburn trainer Danny Williams to run Court Connection at Canberra today.
The Lonhro gelding was balloted out of the Kokoda Handicap (1800 metres) in Sydney and will instead run in the Benchmark 65 Handicap (1600m) at Thoroughbred Park today.
Williams said it was a far-from-ideal race for the five-year-old as he was looking for more ground.
''I think the horse is going really well, as good as I've ever had him. It was only a second thought running him in Canberra. I had him entered at Randwick [on Anzac Day] but he was balloted out,'' he said.
''I didn't see much for him just at the present time so I decided to throw him in as a late nomination [at Canberra] seeing the fields were a bit small.
''It wasn't ideal the 1600m, he's looking for at least 1800m or 2000m but the horse is well enough in himself and we're hoping he'll run well.''
Court Connection has had two wins and two places in his five starts this preparation.
He won a Benchmark 70 Handicap (1550m) at Canterbury in February as well as a Class 3 Handicap (1200m) at Goulburn three weeks earlier.
Court Connection is sired by Lonhro and out of Imperatrix, and Williams thinks the 1800m-2000m is about his best distance.
Lonhro won more than $5.7 million in prizemoney and saluted in 11 group 1 races, including the Australian Cup, the Queen Elizabeth Stakes, the Mackinnon Stakes and the Caulfield Stakes twice.
All were run over 2000m.
Williams felt Court Connection was well placed, although the outside barrier in a small field wasn't ideal.
The Goulburn trainer thought the Lonhro five-year-old had a tendency to over race when he didn't have cover. Ideally, he'd prefer a barrier in the middle of a bigger field.
Williams said he was a hard horse to find suitable races for but a strong showing in Canberra could lead to the Wagga Wagga carnival.
Canberra races: at Thoroughbred Park, eight-race meet. Starts at 12.40pm.