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Caulfield next for Lad after Valley mishap

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Greg Eurell expects Fontein Lad to run well at Caulfield despite a four-week break between races.

Greg Eurell says Fontein Lad has taken no harm from an incident which forced his late scratching at a recent Moonee Valley meeting and the trainer expects a good showing from the gelding at Caulfield.

Fontein Lad was to run at Moonee Valley over 2040m on December 23 but was withdrawn after kicking out and getting his leg over a fence as he was preparing to go down to the parade ring after being saddled up.

Eurell said Fontein Lad had a few scratches and believed he could have started but understood he had to be scratched on veterinarian’s advice.

Instead, Fontein Lad has his next start in Sunday’s Annette Daymon Handicap (2000m).

“There’s absolutely no damage done,” Eurell said.

“He was scratched on the Saturday and we worked him on the Sunday morning on the treadmill, just to give him something to do because he missed a run.”

He said Fontein Lad was “in really good fettle” going into Sunday.

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“I’d be expecting him to run well. There’s no reason not to,” he said.

Because Fontein Lad missed the Moonee Valley race, he will be four weeks between races.

“It’s not ideal but he’s a horse who works quite strong in his track work, and just in his general well-being he’s given us every indication that he’s well enough,” Eurell said.

“Hopefully his fitness levels are where we want them to be.”

Fontein Lad went close to winning at Cranbourne two starts ago and Eurell pointed to a soft track at Pakenham on December 9 as the reason for his unplaced run when fourth in a 2000m benchmark-78.

“At Pakenham the track was too soft for him,” he said.

“And come Sunday, it’s going to be pretty dry after Saturday.”

The temperature in Melbourne on Saturday is forecast to reach 41 degrees which prompted officials to move the Caulfield meeting to Sunday when it is expected to be 20 degrees cooler.

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