Warrnambool trainer Matthew Williams has an anxious wait to find out if Harbour Views gets into the $500,000 Ballarat Cup.
Williams has mapped out a contingency plan if the talented gelding does not make the field for the Listed 2000m Ballarat Cup which has attracted 32 nominations but has a field limit of 16 plus emergencies.
Harbour Views was 23rd in the ballot on Monday with acceptances taken on Wednesday.
“Fingers crossed he can get into the race. That’s our main plan,” Williams said.
“But it might end up that he ends up running at Moonee Valley the following Saturday. There’s a benchmark-90 over 2040 metres, so he may have to go there if he doesn’t get into the Ballarat Cup.
“I’d love to get him in the Ballarat Cup with 54 kilos on his back.
“I think a big track like that would be ideal.”
Harbour Views was beaten for the first time in six starts when second to Star Missile in the $500,000 Melbourne Cup Carnival Country Final (1600m) at Flemington on November 7.
Williams felt Harbour Views was not able to build his momentum and get to his top quickly enough under 61.5kg after failing to get clear running until relatively late in the race.
“He was probably only just starting to build as he got to the line,” he said.
“We were obviously disappointed to break his winning streak but I wasn’t disappointed with his run at all.”
Williams said Harbour Views had come through the Flemington race in terrific order and he was keen to test him over 2000m for the first time to help shape his autumn program.
Harbour Views will be given a break after his next run, whether that is at Ballarat or The Valley.
Fifty Stars, coming off a second in the Group One Cantala Stakes and fifth in the Group One Mackinnon Stakes at his past two starts, heads the weights with 60.5kg and shared equal favouritism at $6 on Monday in an early all-in market.