Progressive gelding Chetwood has been earmarked as a potential Group One winner by global racing powerhouse Godolphin and as part of his preparation he resumes in the Australia Stakes at Moonee Valley.
Friday night’s Group Two weight-for-age sprint over 1200 metres is his stepping stone to the CF Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 11.
Chetwood raced his way from restricted grade to a stakes race success in a four-start spring campaign which began in Sydney before winding up in Melbourne last October.
The $4.40 second favourite, Chetwood has drawn barrier eight with Black Heart Bart the $2.70 market leader over Malaguerra at $4.
Trainer John O’Shea is looking forward to Chetwood kicking off his campaign in Melbourne.
“He’s been set for this and he’s shown us with what he’s done at home that he’s ready,” O’Shea said.
“All I wanted was to draw out a bit and he’s come up with barrier eight which should suit him nicely.
“He’s trialled very well and this looks an ideal lead up for him to the Orr Stakes in a couple of weeks.”
Peacock is the second Godolphin representative and the only three-year-old in Friday night’s race.
The stable is hopeful he can follow in the footsteps of Holler who won last year’s race as a three-year-old.
“He has similar form lines to Holler and they proved pretty good this time last year,” O’Shea said.
“He’s had a nice spell and made good improvement, which he needs to do because there’s a pretty strong group of three-year-old sprinters coming through.”
Peacock is rated a $26 chance.