You couldn’t get a worse start to a trip to Perth than The Cleaner, who had to wait for three and a half hours in a float before even being loaded onto his plane, however the seven-year-old gelding has since settled in at a local stable ahead of the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) on Saturday.
Trainer Mick Burles reported to TVN about The Cleaner’s torrid wait before travelling west, which made the gelding very agitated. He apparently went off his “head” in the truck since he was the last horse loaded onto the plane.
“He put his head through the roof of the truck. He never hurt himself, but he really went off and he was dripping wet,” Burles said.
“The plane didn’t worry him at all, but it was nearly 14 hours from the time they picked him up until I got to the stables in Perth.”
Despite the horrible start, The Cleaner travelled well on the plane ride itself and settled in at Fred Kersley’s stable very well, not missing a beat.
He’s pretty happy within himself and he’s eating well. I’m pretty keen on him,” Burles said.
The Cleaner is $3.80 favourite in the Railway Stakes betting market at Ladbrokes.com.au however that could all change following the barrier draw on Tuesday.
“Fred says if you don’t draw a barrier here you can’t win, but they don’t know this horse either,” Burles concluded.
The Cleaner is set to work at tomorrow’s ‘breakfast with the stars’ ahead of the live barrier draw. The cult hero from Tasmania enjoyed his best campaign yet during the spring in Melbourne, which included back-to-back wins in the Group 2 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) and Group 3 JRA Cup (2040m).
The gelding made his debut in Group One racing on October 25 in the Cox Plate (2040m), finishing ninth to Adelaide. Despite boxing on into the straight he was just outclassed. However he turned it around on November 8 in the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m), finishing third to Hucklebuck. He found it much easier to find the front from barrier six and set a solid tempo before winding it up from the 1000 metre mark. After looking in trouble as the pack straightened he fought hard as usual to finish just one and a half lengths off the winner.
Open your online betting account at Ladbrokes.com.au to receive a $100 bonus match bet on your first deposit to use on the 2014 Railway Stakes this Saturday.