Talented colt Harlech will have what is likely to be his last start in New Zealand this season when he lines up in the Karaka Million 3YO Classic at Ellerslie.
The Mike Moroney and Pam Gerard-trained three-year-old is set for a freshen-up after Saturday’s rich feature over 1600m, having won two of his six starts this preparation and finishing runner-up the other four times.
Harlech won the Group Two Sarten Memorial Stakes (1400m) in October before finishing runner-up in his next three assignments, including the New Zealand 2000 Guineas and Levin Classic, both over 1600m at Group One level.
Gerard is based at Matamata in New Zealand while Moroney spends most of his time at Flemington in Melbourne, with Harlech slated to race in Australia in the autumn.
Gerard was pleased with Harlech’s performance at Trentham on January 11.
“I thought he ran super in the Levin Classic,” she told NBZ Racing Desk.
“It’s just a little bit new to him ending up in front.
“Being a colt he just clocked off. He has always had outside draws and he has always come from the back and having something to chase.
“I just think he hit the front too soon and was probably just a bit complacent.
“At this stage he is more than likely to head to the paddock after this run.
“We have got to keep everything open at the moment but the Randwick Guineas has always been the main plan for him.
“We will get through this race and see how he pulls up. He is a big colt, is still quite physically immature and it is really hard to make long-term plans when they are not quite there yet.”
Gerard said the Levin Classic took its toll on Harlech but he is now showing signs of his usual self.
“It’s a big trip down to Wellington and it’s always hard to get them to turn around and back up as quick as what they do,” she said.
“He was a bit quiet for a few days but I noticed this week he was really starting to come back to his usual self and is starting to get quite obnoxious again so I am happy enough that he can take his place.”
The Randwick Guineas (1600m) is on March 7.