Triple Group One winner Happy Clapper has had a pipe-opener in a Randwick barrier trial when fourth in a heat won by the John Thompson-trained Sweet Deal.
Happy Clapper worked to the line in the 900m-heat on the course proper on Thursday, pleasing trainer Pat Webster with his effort and his recovery.
The Thompson-trained multiple Group One placegetter Dreamforce won the first of the two course-proper trials and will be on the same weight-for-age path as Happy Clapper starting with the Apollo Stakes and Chipping Norton.
“Happy Clapper will have another trial over 1200 metres on February 6 and then go to the Apollo nine days later,” Webster said.
“He will have a much harder trial and that should have him right for the Apollo Stakes.
“He only had about three weeks spelling but it is still good to see he is enjoying it.
“It’s exciting to think he is coming back.”
Group Three winner Sweet Deal edged out Prince Fawaz with Lanciato just ahead of Happy Clapper in their heat.
Redzel finished a short head second to Redkirk Warrior in the 2018 Lightning.