Trainer Michael Hibbs is hoping the unbeaten Turf Crusher can take the next step when he makes his Melbourne debut at Moonee Valley.
After a debut victory at Bairnsdale last month, Cranbourne based Hibbs headed to Adelaide with Turf Crusher for victory on January 3.
Now its off to Moonee Valley where the son of Turffontein contests the Antler Luggage VOBIS Gold Star over 1500m on Saturday.
Turf Crusher will be Hibbs’ first starter in the Melbourne metropolitan area since October 31 when Langridge Street, also an acceptor at both Moonee Valley and Morphettville Parks on Saturday, ran at Moonee Valley.
Hibbs has instead been trekking across to Adelaide in search of victories with his team.
“You have to go where you can win,” Hibbs said.
“It’s a step down from Melbourne and when you’re trying to make horses it’s a good trip for them to help them grow up.”
Hibbs said Turf Crusher is a progressive type and is hoping the gelding has made the same amount of improvement that he made from his debut win at Bairnsdale through to his win in Adelaide.
Saturday’s race is a step up in grade and Hibbs believes the gelding is up to the task but will be guided by how he performs on Saturday as to whether he goes on further.
“It’s his first preparation at the races,” Hibbs said.
“He’s done a great job so far and I’m sure it will be a stepping stone in his learning to progress further.
“Depending on how he pulls up after Saturday will depend on whether we tip him out or give him another run.
“If he can knock off a race like that then we could aim a little higher with him.”
Hibbs said Langridge Street, who contests the City Jeep Handicap over 2040m, was a consistent performer having filled a place at four of his last five starts in Adelaide.
“He tries hard and when he gets down in the weights a bit, which he is on Saturday, he’ll be right there at the finish.”