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Victoria Derby plans for Royal Symphony have been shelved

Victoria Derby plans for Royal Symphony have been shelved with the colt the worse for wear after a torrid run in the Cox Plate.

Damien Oliver was outed for improper riding in Saturday’s Cox Plate with stewards saying he rode Happy Clapper inwards and made contact with Royal Symphony early in the race.

They said Oliver continued to apply unnecessary pressure to Royal Symphony on a number of occasions after that.

Royal Symphony’s trainer Tony McEvoy said he was incredibly proud of the colt’s fourth behind Winx but upset to see how he had pulled up from the experience.

“He’s come out of the race like a schoolboy that’s been bullied, which is exactly what happened,” McEvoy said.

“Looking at him this morning, seven days is not enough turn around for him to be at his best.”

Oliver has appealed his 20-meeting ban which will keep him out of the Flemington carnival which begins with the Derby on Saturday.

Royal Symphony had been the $4.60 favourite for Saturday’s $1.5 million Derby (2500m).

McEvoy said Royal Symphony did an incredible job to finish as well as he did in the Cox Plate and he was looking ahead.

“I think he put his hand up that he’s a star of the future,” McEvoy said.

“You’ve got to remember he only had his first race start in May this year.”

The Australian Guineas will be the colt’s aim in the autumn with another Cox Plate in McEvoy’s sights next year.

McEvoy could still be represented in the Derby if Rockarral, who finished 10th in the Geelong Classic last Wednesday, can get in.

“He’s well down on the list but if he gains a start, he’ll run,” the trainer said.

“He had a luckless run in the Geelong Classic.

“If we can get him to the Derby I think it would be very good for him.”

Spring Champion Stakes winner Ace High,Clfifs Edge and Main Stage are now the $4.60 equal favourites for Saturday’s Classic following Royal Symphony’s withdrawal.

 
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