Mick Huxtable’s undefeated young gun from South Australia, Lord Aspen could be hard to defeat this weekend when he looks to retain his flawless record with a maiden Group assignment in the 2014 Sandown Guineas.
The Murray Bridge-trained Good Journey three-year-old has won all four of his career starts so far and looks a formidable force in Saturday’s $300,000 Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) on Zipping Classic Day.
Drawn in barrier six with regular rider Matthew Neilson retaining his association with the up-and-comer, Lord Aspen currently sits on the second line of Sandown Guineas betting at Ladbrokes.com.au.
The markets are led by the in-form Stratum Star at $2.80, Darren Weir’s dual stakes winning colt coming off a second to Kermadec in the Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Derby Day.
Stratum Star will be ridden by Kerrin McEvoy in the race, the jockey boasting a commanding four wins over the past six editions of the race aboard a quartet of Darley-owned, former Peter Snowden-trained youngsters.
In a nice form line for Stratum Star, all four of McEvoy’s previous Sandown Guineas winners came via a run in the Carbine as well.
Lord Aspen meanwhile is at a nice price of $4.80, in from $5, to celebrate win number five.
Unlike his main rival the galloper is yet to race in Group company, only stepping up to black type level for the first time last Saturday.
On Emirates Stakes Day he raced in and held on by a long neck to win the Listed Hilton Stakes (1400m) defeating $31 outsider, the previously undefeated Orient Line.
This weekend sees him step up to a mile for the first time with his hoop Neilson expecting him to do his best work late and be hard to hold off.
“He’s still really new at racing but he loves it. He has attacked the line in all of his trials as well,” Neilson told Racenet.
“Whatever Mick has been throwing at him, he keeps raising the bar.”
Neilson is also confidence the step up in distance will suit with the horse easy to settle just off the speed in his runs so far.
“The mile won’t worry him,” he said.
“I reckon the further the better for him. Backing up is probably going to take the edge off him a little bit.
“He jumps and puts himself behind the speed, which is a plus, and hopefully he can just possie up behind the leaders and get a nice run and attack the line good.”
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