Stablemates Kementari and Sanctioned have taken different paths to the Caulfield Guineas and trainer James Cummings is convinced both deserve respect in the $2 million classic.
Kementari comes through the traditional Guineas Prelude at Caulfield while Sanctioned will race on a seven-day back-up after his fourth in the Group One Spring Champion Stakes over 2000m at Randwick last Saturday.
The colts form part of a strong representation on Guineas day for Cummings in what could be his biggest day yet since taking over as head trainer in Australia for Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation in July.
Kementari has been primed for the race after finishing fourth in the Run To The Rose first-up in Sydney before his closing third in the Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) last Sunday week.
“He was warming to the line beautifully and it was a really nice Guineas trial,” Cummings said.
“He looked like he would have been better for the experience at Caulfield but he’s a beautiful moving colt. He’ll be one of the best looking horses in the yard on the weekend and I’d like to think that he’s improved enough third-up into the Caulfield Guineas.”
Kementari has barrier 10 and is third favourite at $5 while $26 chance Sanctioned has to overcome the outside gate in the field of 16.
“If our colts can be chiming into the race behind the right runners then we’ll give ourselves a chance,” Cummings said.
“Sanctioned looks to have tightened up nicely from last weekend and looks set to run a big race.
“The Guineas will be perfect for Kementari. He’s going to have every opportunity to test himself and prove himself at this level.
“They are both two-year-old winners and have both placed at Group level in the lead-up to this and been running against the right horses.
“They’ve brought different form lines to the race but they’re both really well.
“Because he’s probably had the more traditional lead-up you’d lean towards Kementari but I believe both colts will run well for us.”
Dropping back from 2000m to 1600m in seven days doesn’t concern Cummings with Sanctioned.
“I think if anything it will suit Sanctioned because he’s got plenty of speed about him,” he said.