Awesome Rock ready for 2016 Cox Plate challenge

Awesome Rock

Leon and Troy Corstens will take the opportunity to give Awesome Rock a gallop at Moonee Valley in preparation for his shot at the $3 million Cox Plate.

Awesome Rock secured his place in Saturday’s Cox Plate when he won the Group Two Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes at Moonee Valley earlier this spring.

That race carried with it a Cox Plate ballot exemption to the winner.

Since his Valley win, Awesome Rock has finished fifth in the Group One Underwood Stakes (1800m) and closed nicely under a big weight for fifth in the Group One Toorak Handicap (1600m) last start.

“He came through the Toorak much better than he did the Underwood,” co-trainer Troy Corstens said.

“He just jarred up quite badly in the Underwood and I think the track was much more conducive in the Toorak.

“He bounced out of it and he’s lovely and fresh. His work has been excellent and he’ll go there (to Moonee Valley) on Tuesday for Breakfast With The Best.

“That will top him off and he’ll take his place in the Cox Plate.”

Jockey Stephen Baster continues his association Awesome Rock in the Cox Plate for which the five-year-old horse is at $51.

Winx is out to $2 in the TAB’s fixed odds market with in-form Hartnell into $2.80, with the next horses in the market at $15.

“Clearly everyone is saying it’s a two-horse race but lots of things can go wrong in horse racing, so we’re going to have a crack and see what we can do,” Corstens said.

Awesome Rock won the Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes by two lengths.

“If he races like that, we’ll be really pleased,” Corstens said.

“He seems to love the track and hopefully he can do that over the 2000 metres on Saturday.”

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