The back-up plan has come into play for young trainer Nick Ryan and Mahamedeis who runs at Caulfield.
Ryan had hoped to be in Brisbane running Queensland Derby hope Mahamedeis in the Rough Habit Plate at Doomben on Saturday.
A minor setback last week has resulted in the gelding staying home to run in the Le Pine Funerals Handicap (2000m) at Caulfield.
Mahamedeis gave Ryan his first Saturday win when successful at Caulfield over 1600m on April 21.
The trainer was looking forward to heading north to give Mahamedeis experience racing right-handed but the three-year-old developed an elevated temperature.
“He had a bit of a viral thing coming on but he had a few days of anti-biotics and he came good over the weekend,” Ryan said.
“He put in a terrific piece of work on the course proper on Tuesday morning.
“We’ll run at Caulfield and if he runs well then we’ll head to Queensland.”
Ryan also entered Mahamedeis for the Rough Habit Plate but reasoned he would be better keeping the gelding in his home stable rather than risking a flight on Thursday night.
“As he’s getting over a little viral thing we thought we’d stay home,” Ryan said.
“It looks the ideal race for him.
“It’s over 2000 metres, it’s a Super VOBIS race, so we thought we’d keep him in his own backyard this week and then we’ve still got four weeks until the Derby.”
If Mahamedeis performs up to expectations, Ryan expects the gelding to head north for the Grand Prix Stakes (2200m) at Doomben before the Group One Queensland Derby (2200m) at Doomben on June 9.
“He’d need to have a lead-up run in Queensland to give him that one look going the other way, so the Grand Prix is likely to be the race and then two weeks into the Derby,” Ryan said.
Unbeaten Darren Weir-trained import Furrion has a stranglehold on Saturday’s betting as $1.80 favourite while Mahamedeis shares the second line with another Weir runner Lucky For All at $8.50.