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Rebel Raider Has Eyes On Melbourne Cup

The loss of one of his most promising horses in a road accident has not dampened Adelaide trainer Leon Macdonald’s enthusiasm about Melbourne Cup 2010 contender Rebel Raider.

One of the stable’s rising three-year-olds was hit by a taxi outside Morphettville racetrack last week and subsequently put down.

The area outside the track is signposted but Macdonald and his fellow trainers will meet with the local council this week to determine if more can be done to alert drivers to horse traffic.

“He was an unnamed two year old and a lovely little horse,” Macdonald said.

“We’ve got a council meeting this week – I don’t know what we are going to do, but hopefully something can be done.

“It was very unfortunate.”

On the bright side, Rebel Raider is steadily working towards fulfilling Macdonald’s Melbourne Cup dream and will resume racing next month.

One of the early favourites for last year’s Cup, the dual Derby winner suffered a leg injury at trackwork a day after weights were declared.

He recovered with the aid of surgery and a lot of work on the water walker and had a short autumn campaign to keep him fit.

The plan Macdonald had in place for Rebel Raider’s 2009 spring is the one he will follow this year.

“He has been back in work for six or seven weeks and will resume over 1400 metres in the Penny Edition at Morphettville next month,” Macdonald said.

“He will go to Melbourne after that and follow exactly what was going to happen last year with three weight-for-age runs into the Caulfield Cup.

“Everything is good with him and his leg is good. He has thickened up a little bit but still has the same temperament and shows no signs of being bullish.

“He’s a gentle giant.”

After the Penny Edition on August 21, Rebel Raider will head to Melbourne for the Group Two Makybe Diva (1600m), the Group One 2010 Underwood Stakes (1800m) the Group One 2010 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) ahead of the Caulfield Cup on October 16.

Joining Rebel Raider in Melbourne will be five time stakes winner Majestic Music whose aim will be the Group One Myer Classic (1600m) on October 30.

Article by Caryl Williamson Aapracing

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