Leon Corstens believes Del Prado is in career-best form heading into the VOBIS Gold Star at Moonee Valley while the trainer is also hoping for an improved showing from Word Of Mouth.
Corstens, who trains in partnership with his son Troy, is planning to start both Del Prado and Word Of Mouth in Saturday’s $150,000 race over 1514m.
Del Prado came from the tail of the field to win over 1300m first-up at Sandown last month before again closing strongly at Flemington for second to Underestimation over 1400m on January 1.
“He’s never looked better,” Corstens said.
“I think he’s going better than ever.”
Word Of Mouth on the other hand, disappointed Corstens when he finished last when he resumed at Moonee Valley on January 2 over a trip short of his best.
“I was very disappointed with the run,” Corstens said.
A post-race scope detected mucus in Word Of Mouth’s trachea and he needed treatment.
“I’m going to work him in the morning but at this point in time I couldn’t be happier with him,” Corstens said.
“He looks good. He’s done everything right so it’s full steam ahead.”
Corstens said he was likely to take blinkers off Word Of Mouth for Saturday, saying the gelding has worked well without them on the training track.
Del Prado and Word Of Mouth both have 59kg in the race which has attracted 20 nominations.
Corstens said Del Prado was the horse going better out of the pair.
“He’s got the form on the board while the other horse went ordinary the other day,” Corstens said.
Darren Weir has Profit Share and Burning Front nominated while Ballarat trainer Kylie Vella has entered lightly raced four-year-old Zuprising who has won two midweek races at Sandown in the past month.