Payne Upset Over Losing Prince of Penzance for Memsie Stakes
Michele Payne is expressing reluctance to the suggestion that she retire, even though she lost part of her pancreas to a crash and the news that she will not be taking the ride aboard Prince of Penzance in the upcoming 1400 m Group 1 Memsie Stakes at Caulfield.
She had ridden the seven-year-old gelding in 24 of his 25 starts, but the horse’s owners are adamant that she should retire after the May 23 fall at Mildura, but she has steadfastly pursued a return to the saddle.
Doctors and family have advised her to give up riding and it appears at the moment that either Brad Rawiller of John Allen will get the Prince for the Memsie.
On the only occasion that Payne did not ride him, Hugh Bowman took her place.
Payne and Prince of Penzance shocked the racing world last November in winning the Melbourne Cup at 100 – 1 odds. Futures betting at the moment favours his chances at $34.00.
It appears to be a case of concern for her well-being that led to the decision regarding the Memsie Stakes, and while she has been making considerable progress in her recovering from the surgery, she still lacks medical clearance to ride, so the decision seemed more a foregone conclusion than any sort of conspiracy did.