Class stayer (Sir) Charles Road flew to Sydney over the weekend as he prepares to kick off a spring campaign that will hopefully culminate in a tilt at the Gr.1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) in November.
Prepared by Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott, the rising six-year-old will forego the nominations he held for the Gr.1 Windsor Park Plate (1600m) and Gr.1 Livamol Classic (2040m) during the Hastings Spring Carnival in favour of his Australian mission that will commence over 1400m at Randwick on August 17.
Owner David Archer is delighted with the condition of his Gr.1 Sydney Cup (3200m) placegetter as he prepares for his first-up run.
“Lance and Andrew have him looking magnificent and I’m thrilled with his condition as he gets ready for his new campaign,” Archer said.
“All his bloods and the like are spot on and he travelled over to Sydney really well.
“He is a great traveller and he has gone with his own permanent groom, Leanne Jackson, who will be looking after him while he is over there and she reported he has settled in nicely.”
A combination of unsuitable lead-up races and the fickle nature of the New Zealand spring tracks has been the catalyst for Charles Road heading straight to Sydney without any preparatory runs in New Zealand beforehand.
“We had a good look at the programmes here and where we wanted to take him in Australia and we just couldn’t make it work,” Archer said.
“You also just don’t know what kind of track you are going to strike here so it just made sense to head straight to Australia.
“All going well he will have four runs in Sydney, culminating in the Metropolitan Handicap (Gr.1, 2400m) in October.
“If he is still going well, we would have a look at the Caufield Cup (Gr.1, 2400m) and then the Melbourne Cup from there.
“That’s all a big if at this stage, so we will take it race by race.
“He had no luck last year so to go as well as he did in finishing seventh off a very limited preparation in the Melbourne Cup gives me plenty of hope he can make it to the race again this year.” – NZ Racing Desk