Victorian horseman Anthony Freedman has jumped at the chance to book Darley’s No. 1 rider Kerrin McEvoy who is engaged to ride Doomben Cup winner Mawingo for their autumn return in the $400,000 Group 1 C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 9.
Freedman confirmed the 2013 CF Orr Stakes would mark the return of his imported Tertullian stallion Mawingo who could be headed to the prestigious Singapore Cup later in the year.
Mawingo enjoyed a stellar first season down under winning at Flemington in their Australian debut in April last year before heading to Brisbane for the winter carnival.
There they had three runs producing two thirds (AD Hollindale Stakes – Brisbane Cup) and a Group 1 victory when they narrowly defeated Peter Moody’s Group 1 winners Lights Of Heaven (2nd) and Manighar (3rd) in the Doomben Cup.
Unfortunately they failed to come on in the spring and their campaign was cut short after two horror runs when dead last behind Southern Speed in the Makybe Diva Stakes and then a well-beaten eighth to subsequent Cox Plate hero Ocean Park in the Underwood Stakes – the September 22 event their most recent run.
Three different jockeys have partnered with Mawingo in Australia so far, McEvoy to become the fourth when the jump in the saddle for the CF Orr.
While officially the leading trainer for Darley Australia in Sydney, McEvoy is currently based in Melbourne with his wife having just given birth to their third child in Victoria and as such he has made himself available for more Melbourne rides.
While their spring was a letdown Freedman is happy with Mawingo’s progress since and believes that they can regain their form from last winter this time in.
“I’m a lot happier with him this preparation,” Freedman said.
“He only had a short spell and didn’t come up in the spring but the signs are much better this time in.”
Following the CF Orr Stakes Mawingo’s other autumn targets could include the $1 million Group 1 Dubai Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 9 before a return to Brisbane to defend their Doomben Cup victory on May 18 will be considered.
Also on the cards is an international trip to Singapore for the Group 1 Singapore International Cup at Kranji Racecourse in May.
Freedman tasted Singapore Cup success back in 2005 with his brother Lee Freedman preparing 2003 Caulfield Cup winner Mummify to take out the classic, Mawingo to possibly get the chance to emulate that feat.
“He would obviously have to be going very well but the Singapore International Cup would be a lovely race to target,” Freedman said.
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