Avilius to miss Metropolitan Handicap

By: Tuesday 18 September 201

Progressive imported stayer Avilius will not run in the Metropolitan Handicap at Randwick with Godolphin to instead aim him at the Melbourne Cup via the Bart Cummings.

Avilius, who has won all three of his Australian starts including Saturday's Group Three Kingston Town Stakes (2000m), was the 2.80 favourite for the Metropolitan (2400m) on September 29.

The winner of the Group Three Bart Cummings (2500m) on October 6 gains an exemption to the Melbourne Cup.

"We feel that giving Avilius a look at Flemington with the hope of gaining a start in the Melbourne Cup is the right way to go with the horse," Godolphin Australia trainer James Cummings said.

"We discussed this as a team and are confident this is the best lead-up to the Cup and we are all extremely excited to be going down this path."

Although Avilius is yet to race beyond 2000m in Australia, he has a second to Cracksman over 2400m in a Group Two race in France.