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Co-trainer David Hayes chases a fourth win in the 2018 Australian Cup this Super Saturday and one of the standouts in the Lindsay Park contingent for the weight-for-age classic is Harlem.
A six-year-old son of Champs Elysees, Harlem is only lightly-raced for his age having had just the 17 starts.
The former French galloper has raced down under since March last year and has only one Australian win on the record so far having saluted in the Group 3 Naturalism Stakes (200m) in September.
A mediocre spring followed including his last start seventh to Tosen Stardom in the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (2000m) at Flemington during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
The team are hoping for a better autumn bid from Harlem this time in with the $1.5 million Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) calling at Flemington on March 10.
Harlem has returned to work in good condition and is set to kick things off this Saturday at Caulfield Racecourse in the Group 3 $150,000 TS Carlyon Cup (1600m).
Ahead of his first-up start, the galloper was put through his paces in a Friday jump-out at Flemington last week and given an easy time to cross second with Kerrin McEvoy in the saddle.
“Lovely jump-out and he’ll derive a lot of benefit from it,” McEvoy told Racing Victoria on Friday.
The Australian Cup is set to come third-up for Harlem this Melbourne Festival of Racing with the Group 2 $200,000 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) on Ladbrokes Blue Diamond Stakes Day, February 24, to follow the TS Carlyon Cup.
The Peter Young Stakes has produced three of the past four Australian Cup winners including Humidor (2nd) last year.
The last to do the double Harlem chases in 2018 was the Gai Waterhouse-trained Fiorente (2014).
Official 2018 Australian Cup Nominations were taken by Racing Victoria last week and the Lindsay Park stable had a total of 13 early entries.
Hall of Famer Hayes is after a fourth win, most recently training Spillway to salute in the Australian Cup results of 2015.
All-in Australian Cup betting at Ladbrokes.com.au has the aforementioned Emirates Stakes winner Tosen Stardom for last year’s winning trainer Darren Weir as the $6 favourite.
Harlem meanwhile can be found a little further down the all-in Australian Cup odds at $13.
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