BACK: Sound Proposition winning at Randwick last July with Rachel King aboard. The former Kiwi won his first two starts for Newcastle trainer Kris Lees. Picture: AAP Image/Daniel MunozTrainer Kris Lees has put a line through Sound Proposition’s Newcastle Newmarket failure and believes he can join stablemate Prized Icon as a certain starter in the $3 million Doncaster Mile.
Sound Proposition is topweight on Saturday in the group 3 Doncaster Prelude (1500 metres) at Rosehill which offers the winner a guaranteed start in the April 7 feature at Randwick.
The six-year-old, a group 1 winner in New Zealand, resumed with a second-last finish in the group 3 Newmarket, won by Lanciato,on March 9 after falling back through the field in the home straight.
He has since worked home well for fifth in a trial at Scone on March 18 and Lees was hopefulof seeing the best again of the Savabeel gelding.
“He had excuses,” theNewcastle trainer said of the Newmarket start.
“He pulled up with cardiac arrhythmia from his first-up run, so you can put a line through that and he’s trialled in a satisfactory manner since and worked well.
“I expect him to run well. It’s probably a little short for himand I would have preferred another softer track, but he’s in good order.
“They often do bounce back well from it and he doesn’t seem to be showing any issues from it.”
Damien Oliver will take the ride on Sound Proposition, which will start from barrier 10 and was $19 with TAB Fixed Odds.
Lees said dual group 1 winner Prized Icon was a definite starter in the Doncaster Mile after his third in the Ranvet Stakes last week, but Clearly Innocent“probably won’t” run.
Clearly Innocentwas 5 ½lengths last in the George Ryder Stakes last Saturday.
“It will depend how he works in the morning but I’m thinking we’ll keep him four weeks into the All Aged Stakes,” Lees said.
“Prized Icon definitely will run, Invincible Gem and Aide Memoire, we’ll make the decision on them on Tuesday.”
Invincible Gem was fifth in the George Ryder, while Aide Memoire was just over a length eighth in the Coolmore Classic last start.
Meanwhile, n Bloodstock-ownedFrench import Articus will have his first start for Lees in the group 3 Neville Sellwood Stakes (2000m)after being transferred from the Darren Weir stable.
“He’s been with us probably six, eight weeks and he’s settled in well,” Lees said.
“We’ll probably want totake him ontrust a little at first and have a look at him.
“I think he would have probably preferred last week’s track to this one, a more forgiving surface, but he’s ready to go to the races.
“Anywhere near his best he’d be competitive but he can mix his form a bit.”
Newcastle trainer Paul Perry has Ragged Rascal in the group 3 TheSchweppervescence (1400m).
Lower Belford trainer Todd Howlett’s Yuralla Boy gained a start in the group 2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) after a scratching. He was a last-start winner over 2300m at Newcastle.