Chris Waller will make third declaration payments for three stayers in the Caulfield Cup but he is leaning towards having only one runner – Metropolitan runner-up Hawk Island.
“At this stage Hawk Island is the horse most likely to go to the Caulfield Cup,” Waller said.
Waller will also keep Hawk Island’s Metropolitan conqueror The Verminator in the race as well as Craven Plate winner My Kingdom Of Fife but he has other feature Group One targets in Melbourne planned for both horses.
The Verminator, penalised 2kg in both the Caulfield Cup and Melbourne Cup for his decisive Metropolitan win on Saturday, will more than likely have his next run at weight-for-age in the Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby day.
He will now carry 52kg in both Cups.
“The penalty is about what I expected,” Waller said. “It should get him into the (Melbourne Cup) field now.
“I’m happy to be setting a horse like him for the Melbourne Cup and going in via the Mackinnon.”
Melbourne jockey Craig Newitt, who rode The Verminator to victory in the Metropolitan, will have first refusal on the Melbourne Cup ride.
“I suppose Craig is the obvious first call to make,” Waller said.
Waller won’t have a runner at Saturday’s Caulfield Guineas meeting but he is hoping to send at least five horses to Melbourne in what is shaping as the most potent Victorian spring carnival team he has assembled.
The premier Sydney trainer said he would keep Cox Plate-bound My Kingdom Of Fife in Sydney for as long as possible.
“I’ll probably wait ten days before I put him on the float,” Waller said.
“That gives him ten days here and ten days in Melbourne (before the Cox Plate) which is just about ideal.”
Delighted My Kingdom Of Fife’s autumn form is holding up through the Melbourne exploits of Glass Harmonium, Waller said the import would have his training varied in the countdown to the $3 million Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 22.
“We took him to the beach this morning which is a bit of an effort from Rosehill,” Waller said.
Epsom placegetter Red Tracer will also be a Melbourne carnival contender but she will have her target race revised.
“Originally it was going to be the Myer Stakes but weight-for-age might not suit her,” Waller said.
Closer to home, Waller will have important runners at Rosehill on Saturday with Vintedge and Little Surfer Girl entered for the $100,000 Listed Angst Stakes (1400m) as well as promising stayer King Gladiator in a 1900m restricted race.