A fortnight ago five-year-old Daggers Drawn gelding Shadowfax, who came to Kavanagh’s Flemington stable in March of last year, went out at an inflated price of $4 in the Benjamin Quigley Handicap (1400m) before blasting away to an easy five length victory on a Heavy track.
This weekend the explosive galloper is back looking for their second Caulfield win on the trot, this time lining up in the $70,000 Responsible Gambling Awareness Week Cup (1600m).
“He came to me as a tried horse from New Zealand and has just continued to improve each time we’ve raced him,” Kavanagh said of Shadowfax.
After their impressive victory last start, bookies are taking no chances and Shadowfax is odds-on favourite at $1.57 to win this weekend.
Prior to the Benjamin Quigley, Shadowfax had produced just one placing from four starts on rain-affected ground explaining his drifting price that day.
While there is the chance of similar wet conditions at Caulfield this Saturday, Shadowfax has now shown they can handle Heavy ground and so the punters have been keen to take them despite the short price.
“The race played into his hands a bit last time by having a lot of pace on, but certainly it was a good win and he’s now shown he’s effective on wet tracks,” Kavanagh said.
Second favourite in the Caulfield Race 6 markets are the fellow Kavanagh-trained Believe ‘n Achieve ($5.50).
The stablemates are both drawn well for the mile showdown, four-year-old Beautiful Crown mare Believe ‘n Achieve on the rails in barrier one while the favourite will jump from gate four.
Believe ‘n Achieve has had five runs in Adelaide this year, most recently finishing fifth when beaten three lengths by Budriguez in the Group 3 RA Lee Stakes (1600m) on May 8.
The speedy mare has won eight of her 20 starts to date and although her record does not include any other placings, she did run fourth to Sacred Choice in the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) at Flemington last October during the Melbourne Spring Carnival.
“If she runs up to her good from last spring, she ran fourth in a Group 1, she’ll be around the mark too,” Kavanagh said.
“She’s a moody sort of a mare, but when she does put it all together and the race is run to suit she’s hard to beat.”
Kavanagh will also saddle up consistent Face Value gelding Jake Boy in the opening Flemington race this Saturday and Zephyron in Race 3 – the $70,000 Sportsbet.com.au Thing (1200m).
Michael Rodd, also engaged to ride Shadowfax on Saturday, has the mount on two-year-old Zabeel colt Zephyron while Stephen Baster has been booked to ride the in-form Jake Boy in the $70,000 Taralye Cup (1440mk).
Three-year-old Jake Boy has had four starts to date for two wins, a second and a fourth place finish.
Last start they enjoyed a strong three and a half length victory over 1400m at Ballarat carrying 58.5kg and dropping back to 54.5kg on Saturday and also coming up trumps with the inside alley, should kick the day off on a high note for Kavanagh.
“Jake Boy’s been in good form and deserved his go in a race in town and Zephyron raced well last time, but just over-raced a little and needs to learn to settle before we put him out to longer distances,” Kavanagh said.