Trainer Anthony Cummings has been thrilled with the rise to prominence of three-year-old Montaigne and is confident the horse has the ability and class to post an upset win in Saturday’s Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m).
Montaigne only debuted to racing in early January but has produced several notable performances culminating in a particularly strong effort to savage the line for third in the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) most recently, a fortnight ago.
Cummings told Racing Ahead he is confident the Road To Rock gelding is up to the class of the 2016 Randwick Guineas and would not be surprised to see the horse beat clear race favourite Press Statement.
“His finishing has been excellent,” Cummings said.
“He got a bit of a tighten and pushed into what was an unwinnable position in the first part, but given he’ll get even luck out of the gates and sit behind a slower speed than they ran in the Hobartville, I’m hoping it will make the difference.
“He’s certainly working himself and has been more positive in his work; handling things more comfortably.
“He’s working out the routines and what’s required and there’s certainly pluses in all of those things.
“Where we’re sitting right now and the way he’s come along, I think he’s where he needs to be.
“I have no doubt he’s going to be a Group 1 horse at some stage. It could be Saturday or it could be the run after in the Rosehill Guineas but I’m certain it will happen at some point.”
Trialling well in the lead-up to his competitive debut, Montaigne ran a close second in the Schweppes Maiden Plate (1100m) first-up; progressing to consecutive wins in the More Than Just Winning Maiden (1400m) and Colin Tidy Tribute BM78 (1600m) leading into the Hobartville Stakes.
Ladbrokes.com.au is currently offering the best 2016 Randwick Guineas odds, for which Montaigne can be taken at a generous quote of $9.50 for success or $2.25 to finish in the first three.