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Clarken Racing | Clarken Racing News 53095 Clarkens Cup Confidence Dented

Clarken's Cup confidence dented

Clarken's Cup confidence dented

A wide draw has dented Will Clarken’s confidence of winning Saturday’s $500,000 Cranbourne Cup with stable star Ironclad.

The talented yet injury-plagued import has won three Stakes races since making the shift to South Australia and caught the eye when finishing into third behind Old Flame in last week’s Group 2 Linlithgow Stakes (1400m) at Flemington.

While Clarken has little doubt the seven-year-old has improved since the first-up outing, he’s concerned about how much ground jockey Ethan Brown will have to concede from barrier 13 in the field of 15.

“I was praying that we drew barrier or five or six but we’ve drawn wide again – I can't seem to draw a gate wherever I am at the moment,” Clarken said.

“From there, it makes it a little bit hard from him because he’s going to have to concede ground and you don’t want to be spotting them too far at Cranbourne.

“He was terrific first-up and I’m sure he’s come on since then but to win the race he’s most likely going to have to run a career-best.

“He’s going as good as I’ve ever had him going so hopefully he can show that.”

WATCH: Ironclad’s eye-catching first-up run at Flemington.

Clarken said there are several options for Ironclad following Saturday’s race, including another interstate cameo or a let-up back in Adelaide.

“If he was to run super there’s The Gong, which would be a seven day back-up and up to Sydney or hypothetically, he could be on the same plane as Beau Rossa to Perth,” he said.

“He could run on Saturday, fly on Monday and run in one of those races in Perth.

“But it all depends on Saturday and he’s a horse that had a few ailments so maybe giving him a lighter preparation might work well.”

Ironclad is rated $11 in Sportsbet’s Cranbourne Cup market, while he’s a $21 chance in the Group 1 Railway Stakes in Perth later this month.

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