Waldpark, the import whose Spring Racing Carnival status was enhanced without even running over the weekend, will have a light preparation in the lead-up to the Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m).
The German entire’s new trainer Anthony Freedman this morning revealed that he has not ruled out a second-up assault on Australasia’s weight-for-age championship with the 2011 German Derby winner.
Freedman said the $300,000 Group 2 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m), at Moonee Valley on 14 September, was his preferred first-up option for the former Andreas Wohler-trained six-year-old but after that options remain open.
“He’ll trial in three weeks or so and then possibly run first-up in the Feehan (Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes),” he said.
“He may not have another run (before the Cox Plate). He might, but I’m not sure where because I don’t know the horse well enough yet.”
Freedman is no stranger to light Cox Plate preparations, having been assistant to his brother Lee when the Hall of Fame horseman got Mahogany within a neck of second-up success in the 1995 Cox Plate.
It took a champion three-year-old in Octagonal, with just 48.5kg, to defeat Mahogany, who carried 59kg.
Waldpark rose in Cox Plate estimations when Novellist strolled home by five lengths in last weekend’s Group 1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth at Ascot.
At his most recent outing, at Baden Baden on 12 May, Waldpark was beaten a head by Novellist in a Group 2 race over 2200m.
The franking of form didn’t escape the attention of punters or bookmakers, with Waldpark into $18 with Sportingbet for the Cox Plate, or Freedman, who has been impressed with what he has seen from the son of Dubawi.
“If that horse (Novellist) is not the best in the world, he would be right up amongst them,” Freedman said. “It certainly gives this horse’s form a boost.
“He’s been with me about three weeks. He’s a nice, neat, compact horse, he came to me in very good condition and he’s settled in well.”
By Brad Bishop