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Sunday Escape to back up at Flemington

Andrew Murray doesn’t make it a habit of racing his horses from week to week but is happy to make an exception with Sunday Escape at Flemington.

Sunday Escape is down to run in the Listed Kensington Stakes on Saturday, a week after finishing second at Moonee Valley over 1000m.

With Dwayne Dunn booked to ride, Sunday Escape drops from 57.5kg to 54kg on Saturday.

“The only reason I’m looking at the race is because he’s too well not to,” Murray said.

“I rang Dwayne’s manager the other day and told him that and he said ‘you had better have a go again’.

“I think the horse is only coming to his top now.”

Sunday Escape scored his last win over 1000m at Flemington in August 2015 and Murray said his latest campaign, which began in August, was by default rather than design.

Murray had planned a winter assault but some niggling issues meant Sunday Escape’s program was delayed.

“He had a lot of soft tissue problems early in the preparation and that’s why he had such an interrupted preparation,” Murray said.

“The idea was to race in the winter but we missed all of that with his problems and by the time he was coming good it was coming into the spring.

“We dodged the good ones before going again and arguably he could have won either of his last two starts.”

With race fitness under the belt Murray says he doesn’t need to do a lot of work between runs with the six-year-old.

“I lead him off the pony and he does a bit of wading in the pool,” Murray said.

“Now that he’s fit we just keep happy.”

With placings on the StrathAyr surface at Moonee Valley at his past two starts, Murray is a little concerned about the likelihood of a firm track on Saturday while his back-up option of the W J Adams Stakes at Caulfield on February 4 is also likely to be run on a similar surface.

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