They’re the shortie in the markets for the weekend and if successful could shoot to the top of the odds for their first major assignment down under with Kiwi raider Cauthen using Saturday’s Moonee Valley meet as a lead-up to the Caulfield Guineas 2013 in October.
Prepared by Opaki-based trainer Andrew Campbell in New Zealand, Darci Brahma colt Cauthen earned a trip down under for a shot at the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival riches after annihilating their rivals on debut at Te Rapa last month.
Stepping out over the 1200m on July 3 the three-year-old stormed home nearly nine lengths clear of their closest rival to win a two-year-old maiden.
Their three-year-old debut then happened in Oz at Moonee Valley on August 3.
Going back to the 1000m Cauthen lost few admirers when they finished just a length off Clevadude, who they face again in Saturday’s $120,000 Listed McKenzie Stakes (1200m), in the Sweeny Can Do Agents Benchmark 78 when ridden by expat Kiwi hoop James McDonald.
It was a luckless loss for them too as they encountered interference mid field before storming home late.
That run, which was also over an unsuitably short distance, put them right in the frame for the $1 million Group 1 The BECK Caulfield Guineas (1600m) on October 12 for which Campbell has them nominated.
They are also entered as a pipe dream for connections in the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) this spring with the weight-for-age classic to run at Moonee Valley on October 26.
In Caulfield Guineas betting they’re already right up the top of the markets paying $7 trailing only the undefeated Prince Harada ($6.50).
If successful as the firming $2.40 favourite for the McKenzie the price on Cauthen to win the Guineas is set to shorten.
They have a gun barrier four draw for the weekend with McDonald staying on, and they will also enjoy getting back up to the 1200m having impressed Campbell with their work this week at Peter Morgan’s property at Whittlesea.
“I’m really happy with the horse,” Campbell told Racing Victoria on Friday.
“He galloped well on Tuesday and went really well yesterday.
“He’s on target. This is his biggest test to date, I just hope he front ups. But he’s happy, his bloods are perfect and he’s fit. There’ll be no excuses from our end.”
Their main dangers are perceived to be Peter Snowden’s unbeaten Long John ($4.60) first-up here for the new season after winning the Listed ANZAC Day Stakes (1410m) at Flemington last start, and their last start conqueror Clevadude ($6) after their first win over greater than 1000m.
If they step up to the plate in the McKenzie then it’ll be onto the $120,000 Listed Henry Bucks Best Dressed Stakes (1400m) at Flemington Saturday week before the $175,000 Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) at Caulfield on September 29 as they work their way around the Victorian tracks.
To get behind Clevadude in the McKenzie Stakes odds, or looking further ahead to the Caulfield Guineas 2013, head over to bookmaker.com.au where you’ll find all the season’s best markets.