Show A Heart colt Toorak Toff, prepared by astute Caulfield trainer Rick Hore-Lacy, was one of the ace two-year-olds of the year last season winning the esteemed $1 million Golden Rose.
Since their Golden Rose success Toorak Toff has had three starts including their game fourth to the Peter Moody-trained Anacheeva in the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m).
At their last run Toorak Toff ran fifth behind Eclair Mystic in a 1000m handicap at Flemington in December after which connections hastily retired the boom two-year-old early for a career at stud.
Retirement plans were later abandoned after the colt underwent a throat operation to fix an ongoing breathing problem that made him a ‘roarer’.
The operation deemed a success, Toorak Toff is back and ready to regain top form.
“He’s not making the slightest bit of noise and hasn’t at any time this preparation,” Hore-Lacy said.
“We think that breathing problem could have been affecting him, even in the Golden Rose.
“If that’s so, logically you would think he would improve.”
During their two-year-old season Toorak Toff also enjoyed dual wins at Morphettville in the Magic Millions 2YO Classic and The Janz, both run over the same 1200m distance as Adelaide’s premier sprint The Goodwood, and Hore-Lacy hopes Morphettville will bring more luck on Sunday.
One of 21 final acceptors in the capacity The Goodwood field this year, Toorak Toff has drawn wide with barrier 16 and will be ridden by Craig Newitt.
Last weekend Toorak Toff showed promise at a Caulfield jumpout destroying his rivals and igniting hopes within Hore-Lacy that the now three-year-old can race competitively in The Goodwood against stiff competition including race favourite Crystal Lily.
“He’s been working very well,” Hore-Lacy said on Tuesday.
“The 1200m first up really suites him.
“He’s had the two 1200m races in Adelaide and won them both so that’s a bonus.”
Although top-rated nominee Hay List was not accepted for Sunday’s showdown due to the unavailability of suitable flights to Adelaide, there is still plenty of depth in this year’s The Goodwood.
“It looks a very good race, even without Hay List in the race,” Hore-Lacy said.
A strong first-up performance by Toorak Toff, who Hore-Lacy says is going better than his last-to-first run in the Golden Rose, will see him earn a shot at more Group glory over in Queensland during the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.
“We think he’s going at least as well, if not better, than when he won the Golden Rose,” Hore-Lacy said.
“Depending how he runs, he’ll probably go to Brisbane for the two Group Ones up there – the Stradbroke and the 10,000.”
The $650,000 Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) runs on May 28 while the $1 million Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) headlines a bumper day of racing at Eagle Farm Racecourse on June 11.
Superstar sprinter and the world’s current top-rated thoroughbred Black Caviar has also been nominated for both of the Brisbane features along with the BTC Cup which she will contest on May 14 in her Queensland race debut.