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Hartnell Confirmed For Cox Plate
The clash that Australian racing has been waiting for between Winx and Hartnell is now set to materialise after Godolphin confirmed the latter as a definite starter in the Gr1 WS Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on 22 October, reports AAP. Hartnell (Authorized-Debonnaire, by Anabaa) has emerged as the horse most likely to challenge Winx's standing as Australia's best racehorse, following outstanding victories in the Gr2 Chelmsford Stakes, Gr2 Hill Stakes, and Gr1 Turnbull Stakes, which have yielded a combined winning margin of 16.9 lengths. "We've discussed Hartnell's next race with John Ferguson and the boss [Sheikh Mohammed] and the decision is that he will run in the Cox Plate," said Godolphin Australia's managing director, Henry Plumptre. "There's no particular reason over and above the fact that we think it's a nice race for him." Plumptre said a start in the Melbourne Cup was also on the agenda. "Depending on what happens in the Cox Plate, we'll see what happens after that race as to whether he goes onto the Melbourne Cup," he said.