Superstar four-year-old Ocean Park will be a notable absentee from next year’s Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival with their Matamata-based trainer Gary Hennessy confirming plans to head Dubai for the 2013 Dubai World Cup Carnival.
The Thorn Park stallion is already one of the most valuable stud prospects currently getting around in Australasia after their four consecutive Group 1 victories this preparation.
After winning the Makfi Challenge Stakes in their native New Zealand back in September they were bought over to Melbourne and are yet to suffer defeat having won the Underwood Stakes – Caulfield Stakes – Cox Plate trifecta at their three most recent runs.
On Saturday Ocean Park, who has now amassed over $2.6 million in career prize money, will shoot for his fifth consecutive elite level title as the odds-on favourite in the $1 million Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes (2000m).
“He’s a horse that just always tries, he’s so honest,” Hennessy said.
“We just believe in him and he gets the job done.
“We knew we had a horse, he’s done nothing wrong this spring.”
After their Victoria Derby Day assignment Ocean Park will then be turned out for a well-earned break before beginning preparations for a Dubai trip in March where they will target the $5m Dubai Duty Free (1800m).
“He’ll be on the first flight home on Thursday and then have a month off before we get him ready for Dubai,” Hennessy said.
Hennessy said that Dubai was a more appealing prospect than the Hong Kong Derby at Sha Tin Racecourse this December based on how much each race would increase his value at stud.
“There’s been some talk that a race like the Hong Kong Derby would be his for the taking but in fairness to his stallion future, giving him exposure to the northern hemisphere at the Dubai World Cup has a lot more value,” he said.
“We’ve got our eyes on going to Dubai.
“(The Dubai Duty Free) is an ideal race and he’d be an ideal horse for it.”
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