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NZ Stayer Pentathon Out Of Melb Cup
The Gr1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) campaign of NZ 7YO gelded stayer & this year's Gr1 Sydney Cup runner-up Pentathon (Pentire-Star Royal, by Grosvenor) has ended. Trainer John Wheeler told the Taranaki Daily News that Pentathon (2007's NZ Champion Stayer) "was a bit scratchy after Saturday's Egmont Cup" (in which he finished 3rd over 2100m at Hawera) & a subsequent scan revealed "filling in a joint". Wheeler added: "I don't think it is anything serious & his tendons are perfect, but I was left with no option. He was coming to hand nicely & with 53kg in the Melbourne Cup would have been a real chance, as he is a real 2-mile (3200m) specialist. But that's the way it goes. He has won close to a million ($NZ906,256) & there might be more in him. We will put him aside for a month & then reassess things with a view to a run in the Auckland Cup in March." Pentathon (originally a NZ$33,000 yearling at the 2003 NZB Select Colts Sale) boasts 10 wins (including 2007's Gr2 O'Shea Stakes over 2200m at Eagle Farm, as well as 2006's Gr2 New Zealand Cup over 3200m at Riccarton Park & Gr3 Metropolitan Trophy over 2500m at Riccarton) & 13 placings (including May's Gr1 Sydney Cup over 3200m at Randwick, plus 2007's Gr1 Doomben Cup over 2020m & Gr3 Queen's Cup over 3200m at Eagle Farm) from 54 starts.