Star Tasmanian horse Admiral heads to Flemington for his second mainland start in the lead-up to a proposed tilt at a Group One race in Adelaide.
The Barry Campbell-trained Admiral is entered for a 1000m-handicap on Saturday as a test for the Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville on May 21.
The winner of 14 of his 19 starts, Admiral has raced just once before in Melbourne, finishing fifth to Wandjina in the 2015 Group One Australian Guineas.
Admiral racked up his 14th win in the George Adams Plate on a heavy track in February and had not raced since.
Campbell said Admiral was booked to travel to Melbourne on Thursday night and would be ridden by his regular jockey Brendon McCoull on Saturday.
“The 1000 metres will probably be too short for him but it’s perfect for Adelaide,” Campbell said.
Admiral’s performance will determine whether the gelding returns to Tasmania following Saturday’s run or stays in Melbourne.
“He’s booked to come home but he may not,” Campbell said.
“He does a fair bit of beach work and has a yard here at home.
“He likes that. He’s a bit of a country boy.”
Admiral holds a nomination for next month’s Stradbroke Handicap at Eagle Farm.
“If he goes well on Saturday he goes to Adelaide, and if he goes well in Adelaide he’ll go to Brisbane,” Campbell said.
“He’s only a four-year-old and hasn’t had 20 starts. If we turn him out, who’s to say his five-year-old season won’t be his best.
“We’re not going to flog him around for the fun of it.”
Among the 23 nominations for Saturday’s race are Supido and Super One who are also being aimed at the Goodwood.