Protectionist Likely to Return in 2015 Peter Young Stakes

January 13th, 2015

Charging home to secure an incredible four length victory in the 2014 Melbourne Cup last time out on November 4th, trainer Kris Lees has revealed talented German import Protectionist will contest a path towards the featured Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) in March that is likely to begin in the Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on February 28th.

Trainer Kris Lees has revealed Protectionist is likely to return to racing in the Group 2 Peter Young Stakes in February. Photo: Sarah Ebbett

Trainer Kris Lees has revealed Protectionist is likely to return to racing in the Group 2 Peter Young Stakes in February. Photo: Sarah Ebbett

Finishing outside the places just once over his impressive ten start career so far, Protectionist began his racing career under the guidance of renowned German trainer Andreas Wohler; remaining in Australia and joining Lees’ Newcastle stables following his victory in the Race That Stops a Nation.

Thrilled with the form and class displayed by the Monsun entire in the weeks he has spent at his Broadmeadow stables, Lees said he is yet to settle on a path for the five-year-old through autumn, however a heavily-congested Sydney schedule is likely to dictate a trip to Victoria for the Peter Young Stakes/Australian Cup double.

“We haven’t really settled on the exact plan, but there are a couple of options,” Lees told Racing Ahead.

“It’s very, very congested the programming this season, especially in Sydney, so we haven’t really sat down and said which way we’re going to go, but possibly he comes to Melbourne and runs in the Peter Young and the Australian Cup and then back for The BMW.

“That’s the likely scenario, but we’ll just see as we get a bit closer.”

Taking out a minor event over a mile at Germany’s Hannover course on debut in September 2012, Protectionist was unlucky to be pipped on the line by Flamingo Star in the Group 3 Wohnstatte Krefeld Wohnungs (1710m) in November before returning to the paddock.

Contesting just two races over 2013, highlighted by a strong victory in the Listed SWB Derby Trial (2210m) in June, the stallion out of Patineuse ran second in each of the Pries von Dahlwitz (2011m) and Group 2 Grosser Preis Der Badischen Unternehmer (2212m) first-up in 2014; booking a trip to Australia when taking out both the Group 2 Hansa-Preis and Group 2 Prix Kergorlay (3000m) in succession.

Placing a credible fourth in the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) at Caulfield in his only other start prior to the Melbourne Cup, Protectionist is yet to be confirmed in early autumn betting markets, but figures as outright favourite to successfully defend his Melbourne Cup crown with leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au.

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