Improving Warrnambool-based sprinter Youbolt is on the path to riches in Melbourne this summer season with trainer Jarrod McLean leaning towards the 2012 Christmas Stakes on Boxing Day at Caulfield over New Year’s Day’s Standish Handicap 2013 at Flemington.
The five-year-old Exceed And Excel gelding is a veteran of 33 starts, their opening five runs with Michael Moroney before they spent four months with Mark Kavanagh in 2010.
They have been in McLean’s care since early 2011 but are yet to be stepped up against black type company.
After a first-up third at Morphettville in November Youbolt was last seen running a credible fourth to Adamantium in the $100,000 Zouki Western Health Cup (1200m) at Flemington last Saturday, a performance that has McLean hopeful of bigger things to come this summer.
At this stage he is looking at the $120,000 Listed Christmas Stakes (1200m) on Boxing Day for Youbolt’s next run believing that race to be more suitable and achievable than the $150,000 Listed Standish Handicap (1200m) on the first of January, 2013 based on the shapes of the respective tracks.
“I reckon Youbolt will be better suited to running around a corner (at Caulfield),” McLean said.
“The Standish looks like being a top field and 1200m down the Flemington straight is a tough task for any horse.”
McLean will also be well represented in one of Victoria’s premier summer staying features this season with his Ballarat Cup winner King Diamond to target the $120,000 Bago Handicap (2800m) on Standish Handicap Day in the New Year.
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