Western Australian trainer Gino Poletti is confident stable star Luckygray is a tougher horse since his east-coast spring campaign and is ready to tackle a strong field in the Group 1 2013 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington in March.
The popular grey made his first trip to Melbourne at the beginning of the spring, finishing fourth on an unfavourable heavy track first-up in the Group 2 PB Lawrence Stakes before returning to Perth earlier than expected after illness affected him and he ran 11th in the Memsie Stakes.
Poletti believes the lessons learnt from his first trip east have further furnished the talented gelding and he believes he is ready to succeed on the elite stage in Melbourne.
“I’m very confident with the horse now. He’s definitely toughened up a bit. That last trip to Melbourne really steeled him up,” Poletti told Perth’s Big Breakfast Radio Program.
Following the spring campaign, Luckygray returned home to contest Perth’s Summer Racing Carnvial where he cemented his position as one of the best in the west.
He won the Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes by two lengths first-up before running second in the Group 1 Railway Stakes and winning the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic.
The son of Bradbury’s Luck is currently in pre-training and on track to run first-up in the $1 million Newmarket on March 9.
Luckygray has an outstanding record fresh and Poletti will stick with the tried and proven formula, giving him a trial but no lead-up run prior to the major autumn goal.
“I’ll trial him down the Flemington straight to let him know he doesn’t have to turn a corner,” Poletti said.
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