VICTORIA’S leading trainer Darren Weir will take only a light muster of runners from his Warrnambool satellite stable to the Lightning Stakes meeting at Flemington on Saturday.
Weir's Warrnambool foreman Jarrod McLean said Ma Jones and Cadillac Mountain were the only two runners on the nine-race program from the stable’s powerful local yard.
“We've got a light roll-up this Saturday,” McLean said. “We're going to be really busy at Caulfield next Saturday, which is Blue Diamond Stakes Day.
“We’ll have Limestone in the Blue Diamond and it looks likely Black Heart Bart, Lucky Hussler (and) Palentino will be in the Futurity.”
McLean said he rated Ma Jones as the better of Weir’s Warrnambool runners on Saturday.
“She ran well last time at Flemington,” he said. “The race looks ideal for Ma Jones. She's trained on well since her second placing last time.”
Ciaron Maher saddles up Charlie Boy, All Too Royal, Throssell and Kaching, while Symon Wilde has the consistent Dodging Bullets running in a restricted race over 2000 metres.
Meanwhile, the former Aaron Purcell-trained St Jean runs in the $100,000 Avondale Cup at Ellerslie on Saturday.
The race is the middle leg of a $1-million bonus series of races.
St Jean won the first leg the City Of Auckland Cup last month. If he wins on Saturday and follows up with a victory in the $500,000 Auckland Cup on March 11, his connections – many from the western district – will pocket the $1-million bonus.
Purcell was forced to transfer St Jean to top New Zealand trainer Donna Logan after the stallion continually tested positive to the non-steroid, anti-inflammatory drug Ibuprofen.
The drug was administered when St Jean was recovering from a tendon injury at a rehabilitation complex.