King Kat Looks Kool for Strickland Success

Ascot-based trainer Ian Glading has said his in-form warhorse and ante-post favourite King Kool Kat is on target for back-to-back Group wins at Belmont in this weekend’s Strickland Stakes.

Rising King Cugat eight-year-old King Kool Kat secured early favouritism to take out the Group 3 Strickland Stakes (2000m) this Saturday at Belmont in WA after their strong win in the Group 3 Hyperion Stakes (1600m) at the track on June 25.

Yet to finish out of the money in all four of their black-type assignments this prep, King Kool Kat previously ran third to Power Princess in the Listed HG Bolton Sprint; third to Grand Nirvana in the Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m); and then second again to Grand Nirvana, this time by a mere nose, in the Group 3 Belmont Spring (1400m) on June 11 before their Hyperion Stakes win.

A veteran of 63 starts, King Kool Kat has now won eight races earning a fraction under $660,000 in prize money.

Having pulled through their Hyperion Stakes success well, King Kool Kat now looks on target for successive victories to see out what will likely be his swansong season.

“His work at Belmont is good as gold,” Glading said.

Another last-start winner that may be seeking Strickland Stakes success on Saturday is recent Belmont Guineas champion The Underworld.

Trainer Chris Gangemi said he would nominate the boom High Chaparral three-year-old The Underworld for both the Strickland Stakes as well as the $45,000 Dayana Plate (2000m), the lightly-raced galloper to seek their third career win from six starts.

“His stablemates Private O’Dea and The Ramada will also be in Dayana entries,” Gangemi confirmed.

“We’ll assess the Strickland field and then decide if The Underworld goes into that race.

“There’s a big chance he’ll take on seasoned opposition in the Strickland Stakes.

“The weight-for-age race could give us a good guide to his Ascot carnival prospects.”

If bought back for Perth’s Ascot Summer Carnival at the end of the year, The Underworld could target multiple elite levels including the $1 million Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) in November and the $500,000 Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) in December.