Stately Boy will make his city debut at the track where trainer Shea Eden hopes he will also figure in the Victoria Derby later this year.
Narrowly beaten on debut at Pakenham over 1400m earlier this month, the two-year-old will have his second start on Saturday at Flemington.
“I think he’s a really nice, progressive young horse,” Eden said.
“We’re certainly keen to get him out over a trip and possibly set him on a Derby campaign.
“He’s out of a mare who ran fourth in an Oaks and he’s by Stryker who has already sired a Derby winner in New Zealand.
“He’s given the impression from day one that he was going to get over a trip.”
Stately Boy’s dam Royale Harmony was fourth in the 2007 VRC Oaks while this year’s New Zealand Derby winner Rangipo is a son of Stryker.
Saturday’s Murray Cox Handicap (1400m) at Flemington will give Eden a guide with the gelding taking on a field that includes six last-start winners.
“Dwayne Dunn takes the ride as well so it would be really nice to see what his thoughts are after riding him,” Eden said.
“If he can go there and run really well on Saturday, we’d obviously put him away for a little bit and plan that Derby path.”
Eden was confident of a prominent showing from Stately Boy on debut on the synthetic track at Pakenham and the gelding was doing his best work on the line to finish a close second to Savvy Belle who is again among his opposition.
“It would have been nice to find a mile race after his debut,” Eden said.
“We couldn’t get that, but it’s a really nice race at Flemington which will give him his chance on turf. I think he’ll be better suited on turf and the Flemington track is certainly a testing 1400.”
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au