Courageous Veyron set to seal Sydney trip

Veyron has recovered from his battle scars from Otaki and is ready to take on another Group One mission in the $200,000 Lindauer NZ Stakes at Ellerslie on Saturday.

Veyron finished second, a half-length from Nashville in the Haunui Farm Group One WFA Classic on February 23, but got galloped on during the event and was left with blood spraying out of a cut vein.

While not detracting from the win of Nashville in the Haunui Farm Group One WFA Classic, trainer Linda Laing is full of admiration for Veyron.

“I’m so proud of my boy,” said Laing. “He got galloped on and lost a shoe and cut a vein. He is so courageous. My admiration for him has increased 10 fold.”

Veyron faced just four opponents in the Otaki feature and with such a small field it is surprising a horse could be galloped on.

“He’d been struck right up the hock four times,” said Laing. “When the shoe came off, it wiped all the foot down to the quick. There was blood spraying up the wall of the float from the vein when we got back to Karen’s (Zimmerman’s) place.”

Veyron has had a plastic cast tacked to the foot to help the shoe stay on and Laing says he has bounced back from the injury.
“He had a couple of days off after he got back from Otaki, but he really hasn’t missed any work,” she said.

The Otaki race was Veyron’s first start since he won the Group I Zabeel Classic at Ellerslie on Boxing Day and Laing has put plenty of work into the son of Thorn Park.

“He was 14kgs heavier than usual going into Otaki and that was despite me hand-walking him 128kms over 15 days each afternoon,” said Laing. “He really enjoyed it, but he didn’t lose any weight.”

The Lindauer NZ Stakes will be Veyron’s last start before he heads to Sydney, where his main aim will be the Gr.1 $A2 million Doncaster Handicap at Randwick on April 20.

Laing is satisfied with the 55.5kg Veyron has been given for the 1600-metre event, in which the topweight is More Joyous on 59.5kg. “It’s the lightest weight he’s had for a long time, but it’ll be a top field,” said Laing.

Veyron is booked to be flown to Sydney on April 2 and will run in the George Ryder Stakes as a leadup to the Doncaster Handicap.