John Sargent is looking forward to seeing what impression Gauguin can make in his first start for the Randwick trainer at Canterbury.
The four-year-old gelding is among 10 horses the former New Zealander acquired after James Cummings joined Godolphin as head trainer.
Sargent saddles up Gauguin in Wednesday’s Schweppes Handicap (1200m) where his performance will be measured against Godolphin colt Malahat, who ran third in the Group Three Canonbury Stakes in January..
“His (Cummings) horse looks the one to beat. Malahat will give us a good line so it’ll be interesting,” Sargent said.
“We’ll see how he goes and then decide where we can get a nice race for him. He’ll probably go to 1400 (metres) and then a mile.
“He’s got a touch of class about him and hopefully he can go well and we’ll look at something on a Saturday over the carnival.”
Gauguin, the TAB’s second favourite behind Malahat, has already shown Sargent encouraging signs in two barrier trials, the latest when second to Kementari over 1045 metres at Randwick last week.
“He’s definitely on the way up. He’s had a couple of nice trials to get him ready for this,” Sargent said.
Gauguin last raced in the Group Three Spring Stakes at Rosehill in February, finishing fourth behind Invincible Gem.
“The horse that won has gone on and won another Group race since then. That reads good form,” Sargent said.
“Canterbury should suit him from a nice draw (6), he should be prominent.”
He also has Ladies’ Gem and The Fox Effect seeking their maiden wins in 1100m-races at Canterbury.
“The last Foxwedge I took to Canterbury won (Love Me Baby) so hopefully The Fox Effect will go as well,” Sargent said.
Ladies’ Gem missed the kick by two lengths last start and has had blinkers added.