Kroner needs good barrier for Concorde
Bart Cummings has declared Kroner will not run in Saturday’s Group Three Concorde Stakes at Rosehill if he draws a wide barrier.
Cummings is concerned with Kroner lumping topweight of 59kg in the 1100-metre feature and will not be taking any risks with the five-year-old who is coming into the race after dead-heating with Mentality in the Premiere Stakes on August 15.
"He’s got plenty of weight," Cummings said.
"If he gets a good barrier we’ll run him. I won’t be running him if he draws wide … not with that weight.
"The horse is very well and if he gets a good gate he’ll race well."
Kroner raced with distinction on rain-affected going through the winter highlighted by his win in the Listed June Stakes at Randwick on a heavy surface.
But he showed his versatility and proved he was more than just a wet-track wonder when he made the successful leap to weight-for-age company on a good track in the Premiere.
While the barrier draw will determine whether Kroner takes his place in the Concorde Stakes, trainer David Payne has already ruled out a start for Empire Place.
The dual nominee will instead line up in a Ratings 81 Hcp (1200m).
"I’ll just take the easier option with him, he’s going nicely and has done well since his last run," Payne said.
"He’ll be hard to hold out."
Empire Place, one of the biggest horses in Payne’s stable, has battled niggling leg problems but has been touted as a potential Group One horse by the trainer if he can stay injury-free.
Last time out the four-year-old led all the way when he defeated Concorde Stakes hopeful Ahdashim by three-quarters of a length at Rosehill over 1100 metres on August 15.
The victory was Empire Place’s third from 10 starts.
By Russell Jackson