Premier trainer Chris Waller is adopting a preparation that worked with stable big gun Rangirangdoo for one of his team’s Epsom hopefuls, Altius.
Altius will line up in Saturday’s Group Three Kingston Town Stakes over 2000m at Rosehill but Waller still has the Epsom Handicap (1600m) in his sights with the well-related four-year-old in three weeks’ time.
“We did it (run over 2000m) with Rangirangdoo before he won the Doncaster and it seemed to work well,” Waller said.
“I love bringing horses back and just freshening them up.”
Altius is the $3.40 favourite for the Kingston Town Stakes, a race in which stablemate Bellagio Wynn is also entered and is a $21 chance.
Altius, a half-brother to Elvstroem and Haradasun, has only been with Waller’s team this preparation after doing his early racing under the care of Tony Vasil in Melbourne.
The son of Redoute’s Choice scored back-to-back wins over 1500m at Rosehill earlier this preparation before finishing a close second to Raspberries over the same trip two weeks ago.
Rangirangdoo finished second in the 2010 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) before coming out four weeks later to win the Doncaster Mile (1600m).
Altius is also among nominations for the Group One Metropolitan (2400m) but Waller said it was the intention to drop back in distance to run in the Epsom on the same day.
“But hey, it still helps us go the other way if we need to,” Waller said.
Bellagio Wynn won the Listed Sky High Stakes (1900m) two preparations ago and raced to victory in the Listed Christmas Cup (2400m) at Rosehill last campaign.
The eight-year-old caught the eye with a first-up third in the Winter Challenge (1400m) on July 30 before finishing last of seven over 1800m four weeks ago.
“He’s well weighted (on the limit of 53kg), he wins a race every preparation and hopefully it’s Saturday,” Waller said.