Colic Will Not Ruin Criterion’s 2014 Hong Kong Cup Tilt

December 1st, 2014

Earning a trip abroad on the back of a typically strong 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, trainer David Hayes has revealed talented stayer Criterion suffered from a bout of colic over the weekend but is still on track for an appearance in the Group 1 Hong Kong Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin on December 14th.

A bout of colic has not stopped Criterion's preparation for the 2014 Hong Kong Cup. Photo: Steve Hart

A bout of colic has not stopped Criterion’s preparation for the 2014 Hong Kong Cup. Photo: Steve Hart

Securing five wins and a further seven minor places from his 22 competitive appearances at the races so far, Criterion ran third in the Group 3 Warwick Stakes (1400m) first-up this season before a luckless run for seventh in the Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) on September 6th.

Running second in the Group 2 Hill Stakes (2000m) and consolidating a Hong Kong ticket when finishing an agonizingly-close second to Fawkner in the Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) on October 22nd, the Sebring entire was scheduled to leave Australia on Monday morning alongside Hong Kong Sprint contender Buffering, but will now travel later this week.

“He had a mild bout of colic last night which we treated and it settled down and he was still able to work this morning,” Hayes told Racing Victoria.

“He’s back to normal today and is eating his feed but I’m just exploring at the moment whether I’m able to get a flight a day later.

“It doesn’t make much of a difference if he leaves a day later and it doesn’t really make a difference if he leaves four days later to be honest.”

A standout performer over the 2013 edition of the Spring Racing Carnival, Criterion overcame disappointing early starts in placing second in each of the Group 2 Stan Fox Stakes (1500m) and Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m); returning to the paddock following a credible fourth in the Group 1 Victory Derby (2500m).

Running fourth in the Group 3 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) first-up this time, Criterion placed a close second to Shamus Award in the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) on March 1st, and while disappointing when eighth in the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) a fortnight later, responded in the best way possible when charging home to take out both the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) and Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m) in succession.

Pleased with the form and class displayed by Criterion in the lead-up, Hayes confirmed the 2014 Hong Kong Cup tilt will only be cancelled should the four-year-old suffer from colic a second time.

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