King Magnus to kick off All-Star Mile campaign at Flemington

A bigger and stronger King Magnus will kick off his All-Star Mile campaign when he runs at Flemington on Saturday.

The Robbie Griffiths and Mathew De Kock-trained galloper runs in the Listed Elms Handicap (1400m) in the lead-up to the $5 million All-Star Mile (1600m) at Flemington on March 19.

King Magnus was unveiled on Wednesday as one of the 10 horses voted into the All-Star Mile with the final five “wildcards” to be named closer to the race.

The unveiling of the 10 horses was delayed after news broke that Probabeel, who was fifth in the voting order, had been retired, elevating King Magnus into the top ten of vote getters.

King Magnus only had five votes to spare over the Peter Moody-trained Lightsaber who wound up in 11th spot following Probabeel’s withdrawal.

A last start winner of the Cranbourne Cup in November, Griffiths and de Kock have had their eyes firmly fixed on gaining an All-Star Mile berth and expect him to run well on Saturday.

“He’s going really well,” Griffiths told RSN.

“He’s gained 25 kilos. He looks so much better for it. He’s stronger and he’s trialled really well.

“It wouldn’t surprise us if he’s come up to a higher level of competition where he was in a blanket finish in the (Group 1) Cantala Stakes and then was a Cranbourne Cup winner.”

Melbourne Cup winner Verry Elleegant was the top vote gatherer registering 17,112 votes ahead of I’m Thunderstruck and Zaaki

South Australian galloper Regalo De Gaetano, 11th in last year’s edition and Behemoth, third behind behind Mugatoo and Russian Camelot last year, finished fourth and sixth in the voting respectively.

The Lindsay Park trained Mr Brightside finished fifth on the voting while rounding out the top 10 are Espiona, Elephant and Lighthouse.

Greg Carpenter, Racing Victoria’s Executive General Manager – Racing, said there was no doubting the quality of horses voted into the All-Star Mile who have between them won 16 Group 1 races.

“Verry Elleegant, I’m Thunderstruck and Zaaki were stars of the Spring Racing Carnival, so it was no surprise to see them figure so prominently in voting and we’re pleased that these big guns have provisionally accepted their place in the All-Star Mile,” Carpenter said.

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