The race that launched Kelinni’s career 12 months ago will again be used by Chris Waller as a crucial test for three of his imported stayers on Saturday.
Kelinni recorded his first stakes victory in last year’s Colin Stephen Quality (2400m), backing up to beat all but Glencadam Gold in the Metropolitan.
He then went to Melbourne where he won the Lexus Stakes and finished fourth in the Melbourne Cup.
Whether Kelinni’s rapid rise can be repeated by Wazn, Lunayir or I’m Imposing is debatable but each is at least capable of giving him his second successive win in the Rosehill feature.
The three also remain in the mix for the Group One Metropolitan on Saturday week but Waller was hedging his bets on whether any of them would back up.
“It’s unlikely but you never say never,” Waller said.
“I probably would have said no about Kelinni last year.
“They are nominated to keep all our options open.”
Wazn is the most highly fancied of Waller’s trio after turning around two indifferent performances to win the Wyong Cup last start.
The waters are murkier with Lunayir who will be extended to 2400m for the first time and is coming off a Kington Town Stakes in which he completed without his rider, dislodging Glyn Schofield shortly after the start.
I’m Imposing is the wildcard.
Originally with Sir Michael Stoute in England and then Lloyd Williams’s operation, I’m Imposing joined Waller at the start of his current campaign.
He lost almost two years of his career through a tendon injury but has shown ability at his three runs since, highlighted by a second-up placing behind Metropolitan favourite Prince Cheri.
Waller looked to I’m Imposing’s form in Europe when determining to step him up to 2400m.
“I see he was placed at Ascot over that distance and the trainers over there get a great feel for a horse and if they will stay,” he said.
“They see them racing over a distance, not like us. We experiment to see if they can stay, but they know.”
“Both Lunayir and I’m Imposing have scope for improvement and they need to improve.”
Julienas, runner-up in the Colin Stephen last year, is the early favourite.
He will be the only runner for Gai Waterhouse following the scratching of Reuben Percival who has been retired.