The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
The big Spring Cups are on the agenda for progressive European import Super Titus who enjoyed a stakes win second-up down under for the Hayes stable in Saturday’s Listed $140,000 Heatherlie Stakes (1700m) at Caulfield.
The Dansili six-year-old debuted in Australia with an unplaced Bendigo run in March before improving notably at Flemington fresh to run third at Flemington behind Vinland over 1400m on August 10.
Super Titus was well-liked in markets for the Heatherlie Stakes jumping a $6 shot in markets at Ladbrokes.com.au and did not disappoint producing an outstanding effort to win after a wide run throughout with no cover.
Jockey Jye McNeil had the galloper tracking four deep into the turn, the horse responding well once on the straight to charge home and defeat the Chris Waller-trained Captain Cook (2nd) and Godolphin’s Etymology (3rd).
“He can be a little bit headstrong at times…but he seems like he’s going really well,” McNeil said.
“Last time he was back and he did want to lay in on me…so today I was ready for him.
“Thankfully he went reasonably straight…and the Hayes team and Tom [Dabernig] have got him in good order for today.”
Co-trainer and Hall of Famer David Hayes confirmed post-win that the horse had been purchased with the Spring Cup races in mind.
“I thought it was a good job today as he raced without cover the whole race and travelled with class,” Hayes said.
“Second-up, he had enough stamina to hold on and win a great race.
“I think he’ll just get better as the races get longer as his English form is over a mile and a half plus.”
The plan is now to get his rating up to target the Group 1 $5 million Stella Artois Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 19.
As a qualifier for the 2019 Caulfield Cup, Super Titus is set to have his next start back at Caulfield on September 21 in the Group 3 MRC Foundation Cup (2000m) – formerly the Naturalism Stakes.
Following that the horse will head to Flemington on October 5 in the Group 3 $500,000 The Bart Cummings (2500m).
“The Naturalism [is next], he’s just got to get his rating up a little bit to be sure he gets in,” Hayes said.
“And then to the Bart Cummings, they are the true qualifiers to get him into the Melbourne Cup and Caulfield Cup.
The winner of The Bart Cummings race earns a ballot exemption for the world’s richest handicap – the Group 1 $7.75 million Lexus Melbourne Cup (3200m).
“With no weight, when he draws a [good] barrier he can box seat as well,” Hayes said regarding the horse’s chances in the upcoming Group 1 Cup races.
“That’s what he was bought for.”
Hayes confirmed the team were hoping to stretch Super Titus out over the two miles for a potential Melbourne Cup 2019 bid in the famous Flemington Race 7 on the first Tuesday of November.
The Heatherlie Stakes results saw Super Titus firm in betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au for both the Caulfield Cup and Melbourne Cup from $101 to $51 and $61 respectively.
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