Cox Plate favourite Zaaki has been withdrawn from the $5 million event on race morning, the stable has confirmed.
Set to go around as a $2.80 favourite in the 2040m feature at Moonee Valley, the gelding was found to have had an elevated temperature, which has forced the stable to scratch the horse.
“Absolutely devastated to report that Zaaki has been scratched from the Cox Plate due to an elevated temperature,” a post on Annabel Neasham’s social media read.
“Gutted for connections and James McDonald.”
McDonald had undergone six days of quarantine in Victoria to be able to ride Zaaki in this afternoon’s race, but he is now left stranded.
McDonald and Neasham team up in the first race of the day on Nobel, who will be attempting to win the Inglis Banner.
Nobel is the $4.80 favourite in the opener.
In the Cox Plate, three-year-old colt Anamoe is now the $3 favourite with online bookmakers, while Verry Elleegant has shortened into $4 to win her tenth Group 1 race.