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Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

The Taj Mahal ruled out of Winx clash but Folkswood team stand ground

Folkswood: a stylish winner of the Cranbourne Cup for Charlie Appleby and Kerrin McEvoy
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Halloween is just around the corner and Winx is doing a pretty good job of scaring away most of her potential rivals ahead of Saturday's Cox Plate, with The Taj Mahal now swerving the wondermare who is attempting to win the race for a third year on the trot.

The Moonee Valley field could be the smallest in recent history but one who refuses to scream is Folkswood, who was reported to be on course for a crack at the wondermare by connections on Monday morning. 

Folkswood took little time to acclimatise to his new surroundings in Australia as he claimed the Cranbourne Cup under Kerrin McEvoy this month and Chris Connett, travelling head lad for Charlie Appleby, issued an upbeat bulletin on the four-year-old son of Exceed And Excel.

Connett said: "We have been very happy with him. We have not pushed too many buttons and it is more about recovery with him at this point. He is fit, he will stretch his legs on Wednesday and it will be all systems go for Saturday then.

“If you're not in it, you can't win it. Winx is a wonderful mare and she will take some beating, but if you are not in the race you have absolutely no chance of beating her. It is a big occasion, you don't get many bigger days than a Cox Plate with Winx running". 

The Taj Mahal was also reported in tip-top shape by TJ Comerford, Aidan O'Brien's travelling head lad, on Monday morning but O'Brien has revealed that his three-year-old will not be taking on Winx.

O'Brien said: "I don't think The Taj Mahal will be running in the Cox Plate. There is a race next month, after the Melbourne Cup, that he is likely to run in instead".

Speaking about The Taj Mahal's wellbeing, Comferford said: "He certainly looks well and he has been working really well. He is working a lot better than he was going into the Caulfield Stakes. I don't know why he ran so poorly that day, but he is definitely better than he looked that day."

If you're not in it, you can't win it. Winx is a wonderful mare but if you are not in the race you have absolutely no chance of beating her
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