Three potential Adelaide Cup runners will put their credentials on the line when they meet in the Roy Higgins Quality at Flemington.
Double Bluff, Fanatic and Ormito run over 2600m at Flemington on Saturday as a precursor to the Adelaide Cup at Morphettville on March 12 which has attracted 28 nominations.
The Lindsay Park-trained Fanatic has been set for the Adelaide Cup since winning the 3200m Sandown Cup last November.
Co-trainer Tom Dabernig said the stable had considered taking her straight to Adelaide following her last-start fifth in the Torney Cup at Moonee Valley on February 16.
“Initially we were contemplating going straight there but when we saw this race and the smallish field we thought it was worth having a go at,” Dabernig said.
“She really hit form in the spring deep into her preparation which gave us the confidence that we could run here and then go to Adelaide.
“Some horses you worry that you might not have them right for their grand final, but she won at Flemington and then at Sandown so we thought she’s the sort of mare that could do it.”
Dabernig said Fanatic remained in light work following the spring retaining residual fitness leading into the autumn.
He said the stable was not concerned the mare would be going into the Adelaide Cup on a short preparation.
“Her two runs back have been acceptable and we’ll be looking for a bit more from her on Saturday,” Dabernig said.
“On her best form an Adelaide Cup would be well within her reach.”
Double Bluff will be trying to extend his winning streak to three on Saturday following wins at Caulfield and Moonee Valley.
The Robbie Laing-trained stayer ran second to Annus Mirabilus in last year’s Adelaide Cup carrying 55.5kg.
Saturday’s race has only seven acceptors with the Lloyd Williams-owned Aloft ($3) and Foundry ($3.80) heading the market two days out.
Of the Adelaide Cup-entered trio Double Bluff is rated a $4.80 chance with Fanatic and Ormito at $6.