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Lyre to run but Immortal to miss

Anthony Freedman will unleash his best filly Lyre on Saturday but keep his quickest colt at home with the flying I Am Immortal set to miss the Group 3 Vain Stakes.

Assistant trainer Sam Freedman told RSN927's Racing Pulse that last season's Blue Diamond Preview and Prelude winner needed more work before he is sent to the races after feeling his gallop on Tuesday morning.

"He's still a bit big as he had a big spell," Freedman said. "We tipped him out after the Blue Diamond and he's had two jumpouts.

"His work this morning was really good but he just pulled up a little bit big so we'll look to give him another jumpout or a couple of gallops before he gets to the races."

Freedman said I Am Immortal had lost none of the zip he showed in four runs as a two-year-old.

"I don't think he's changed in his mannerisms," he said. "He's still just a fast horse and we don't want to take that away from him.

"It's really an asset for him. While he's not in the same league as Nature Strip, they are similar to an extent that you are probably best to use their speed and get horses out of their comfort zone."

Lyre and Damien Lane, picture Quentinjlang.com

Blue Diamond Stakes winner Lyre will begin her spring campaign in Saturday's G3 Quezette Stakes, with the stable confident she has improved again since her wonderful debut campaign.

"She's come back really well," Freedman said. "She's taken all the steps we think that's necessary to improve at three.

"You often see a lot of those two-year-olds that can't produce it at three but we're confident that she's really strengthened up. Her trials have been pretty spot-on. She'll have plenty of improvement in her but she's certainly ready to go to the races.

"We'll probably ride her quiet and look for her to finish off strong."

Freedman said the Thousand Guineas would be Lyre's main aim this spring but he said the stable is prepared to change tack mid-spring.

"She's a three-quarter sister to Impending and he didn't quite see out a mile so we are quite cautious that she might not stay that trip and she's got an electric turn of foot," he said.

"We'll plot a path towards the Thousand Guineas but if it looks like she won't see it out we can always freshen her and head to the Coolmore."

The stable is to have several of its best gallopers trial at Cranbourne next Monday, including The Everest favourite Santa Ana Lane and Steel Prince, the only horse that is guaranteed a Melbourne Cup start.

"He's down to trial on Monday at Cranbourne and that will be hit first hit-out and then we'll probably look to get him up to Sydney for his second jumpout," Freedman said of Santa Ana Lane.

"He's still a little way off before he gets to the races. This prep we're looking to go to The Everest second-up and give him a nice gap between runs.

"It could end up a month between his first-up run and The Everest and we'll give him a trial in between.

"He's quite forward this prep and the trip to Hong Kong hasn't harmed him at all and he seems to be flying at home."

Steel Prince also heads to the Cranbourne trials to prepare for his first-up run at the end of the month.

"He'll head to the trials on Monday as well at Cranbourne and then he could head to the Heatherly, the 1700-metre race on the 31st of August," Freedman said.

"That could be his first-up assignment and then we'll plot a path with him. Whether he ends up in a Caulfield Cup or not we're not too sure but he's come back really well."

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