Mask Of Time is likely to bypass the Premier’s Cup Prelude at Randwick to instead run in a country Cup a day later.
The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained Mask Of Time is among 21 nominations for Saturday’s $125,000 Premier’s Cup Prelude over 1800m on the Kensington track but Eustace said at this stage the import would probably go to Sunday’s $100,000 Taree Gold Cup over 2000m.
“Hopefully it should be a bit weaker,” Eustace said.
Stakes winner Mask Of Time finished last of seven runners in the Eremein Handicap (2000m) at Randwick at his most recent start on July 20 but was checked near the home turn and lost momentum.
“He got stopped at a vital time and Hugh (Bowman) really felt like he was going to run into it, but didn’t,” Eustace said.
“After that his chance was gone.”
The stable has five horses nominated for Saturday’s Kensington track meeting but are likely to be only represented by All Too Royal who resumes in a 1100m benchmark 88 handicap.
Eustace said Niewand was scheduled to run at Kembla on Saturday instead of Randwick while Taksu is entered for Sandown on Wednesday and Lagerfield will probably remain in Melbourne for a race at Caulfield.
All Too Royal made a solid progression through the grades with five wins from eight starts last preparation including three victories in a row in Sydney during the summer.
He was spelled after being unplaced at Rosehill in late February and Eustace said the five-year-old gelding appeared to have come back nicely.
“He worked at Canterbury this morning and he worked well,” Eustace said.
“He will more than likely kick off on Saturday and he had a great prep up in Sydney last time around.
“He’s had a smooth preparation leading into this. He looks to have come back well.
“Hopefully he can keep climbing the ladder this time around.”