Looks Like Elvis has been a stable warrior and trainer Jarrod Austin is hoping he can finally break his stakes drought in the Ladies Day Cup at Hawkesbury.
The seven-year-old has placed in six feature races and finished fifth in a Group 1 Epsom Handicap but is yet to taste success at black-type level.
He has also been a long time out of the winner’s stall, his most recent victory coming at Eagle Farm more than two years ago.
He almost righted that statistic when a narrow second to Atishu in the Bill Ritchie Handicap at Randwick in September and gets another chance to land an overdue stakes success in the Listed Ladies Day Cup (1600m) at Hawkesbury on Thursday.
“Since he’s come down to us, he’s run half a dozen placings in Group races and Listed races and we haven’t been able to knock one off,” Austin said.
“It’s very frustrating in that regard but he’s very honest and he tries all the time and I’m sure he’ll get one soon.”
Looks Like Elvis was also nominated for the Chatham Stakes at Flemington on Saturday and that was originally Austin’s preference.
But when a field of just nine accepted for the Hawkesbury feature, and with strong entries and a forecast for wet weather in the southern capital, Austin changed tack.
Looks Like Elvis heads to Thursday’s race off a last-start fifth in the Spring Mile at Randwick and should be ready to peak at his third campaign run.
“He ran super first-up (in the Bill Ritchie) and second-up, the race wasn’t run to suit him. It turned into a real test with the leader taking off and setting a really solid tempo,” Austin said.
“He got out of his comfort zone and had to do a fair bit of work midrace and it just found him wanting that touch second-up over the mile, but it was still a good run.
“The horse has come through it in great order, and he strips a bit fitter third-up.”
Quackerjack heads the Ladies Day Cup field, which also boasts Gosford and Lord Mayor’s Cup winner Polly Grey and former UK galloper Grove Ferry, who makes his Australian debut for Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott.