Ron Leeman’s Manawanui will start as favourite when he lines up for the Group 3 Up And Coming Stakes (1300m) tomorrow August 20, 2011.
The three-year-old gelding will be having just his fourth start when he competes at Warwick Farm this weekend.
Manawanui was spelled during the recent Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival in favour of a spring carnival charge.
Leeman believes that the Ontario gelding has what it takes to win the Up And Coming Stakes 2011.
“He’s never been what I would call 100 per cent hard fit and I don’t want that until we get close to Melbourne, otherwise there will be nothing left of him,” Leeman said.
“But he’s fit enough to win this and I think he will win.
“It’s only going to be bad luck in running or if the track gets too heavy.
“He’s won on slow so he gives the indication he should handle it.”
Manawanui is currently the $2.30 favourite at Luxbet after winning his latest trial by an unbelievable ten lengths.
“(Jockey) Glynn (Schofield) said he just did it himself,” Leeman said.
“He shook him up at the 600m, he came around the bend three in front and then kept on cruising.
“I just couldn’t get over how he kept on moving away from them.”
The trainer believes that Manawanui will look for more distance as the spring progresses.
“I think he will get 2000m because he will settle,” he said.
“Two of his runs he came from the rear of the field.
“His mother won over a mile and his sire was a mile-2000m horse.”
Manawanui’s connections are currently weighing up whether or not to pay a $50,000 late entry fee to enter the Group 1 Golden Rose on September 10.
One of the young gelding’s main aims of the spring is likely to be the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes at Randwick on October 1, 2011.
Peter Snowden’s Detours currently sits second in the 2011 Up And Coming Stakes Luxbet betting markets at $4.60, while Paul Messara’s Rekindled Alliance and David Payne’s Queenian are equal third favourites at $7.
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