Trainer Bryan Guy will get a guide on Saturday on whether hours of hard work with temperamental galloper Charlie Cat have paid off.
Charlie Cat will be having his first Australian start since a failed Hong Kong campaign where he never settled in and ran 10th at his only start at Sha Tin.
He will make his return to Australian racing in a strong field in Brisbane Airport Plate (1200m) at Doomben.
The winner of three races in Australia when trained by Les Kelly, Charlie Cat was sent to Guy three months ago.
Guy, who has won several races for Charlie Cat’s owner John Moore, said the gelding had been a handful when he first came into the stable.
However, Guy used his former sprinter Masai Pride as a lead pony to help settle Charlie Cat and the gelding has started to behave himself.
“We use old Masai around the stables to help with erratic horses and at this stage Charlie Cat has been one of the success stories,” Guy said.
“A lot of hard work has gone into Charlie Cat and he obviously has plenty of ability. But we will get our first real idea of how he is going on Saturday.”
Charlie Cat won a barrier trial at the Gold Coast on September 1 and has done well since.
“Paul Hammersley has been riding him trackwork and will stick with him on Saturday. Charlie Cat went very well in a solid hit out last Saturday,” Guy said.
He said if there was one worry it was the fact Saturday’s race was at Doomben.
“Charlie Cat can miss the start a bit and if you get back at Doomben you can be in real trouble. But you have to start somewhere and this looks a race where we will get a good guide to where he is at,” he said.
“He is an ideal type for some of the Magic Millions races and the summer features. But if he was to win a couple we might even sneak him down to Melbourne for late in the carnival.”
Guy is organising his move to Aquis Farm, formerly Patinack Farm, near Beaudesert.
“The horses will be heading there from October 1. I will be selling my Gold Coast stables which will probably go for apartments.
“I am looking forward to the new challenge,” he said.