There is no rush with Montaigne despite Anthony Cummings fast-tracking the three-year-old into a minor class test at Randwick.
A lightly raced galloper with a win and a placing from two starts, Montaigne has been backed to beat older horses in the Colin Tidy Tribute Handicap on Saturday, a race honouring the former rails bookmaker who died this week.
Cummings is taking advantage of a handicap allowance and the right spacing between races to give Montaigne his chance to make a winning transition from midweek grade.
“We think he’s a nice horse and the race just fits in with the programming,” Cummings’ son and foreman Edward said.
“He gets good weight relief as a three-year-old on a Saturday which also helps.”
A son of the Cummings-trained Group One winner Road To Rock, Montaigne will be one of two last-start winners the stable will turn out at Randwick.
The other will be Alpha Beat, a $14 chance in the ATC Remembers AB “Banjo Paterson Handicap.
An Adelaide Guineas winner after running in the Australian Guineas as a three-year-old, Alpha Beat didn’t come up for a spring campaign.
“He never looked good in coat … and he just wasn’t happy about being in training,” Cummings said.
Alpha Beat carried 59.5kg in a first-up win on a rain-affected track and has an extra 2kg on Saturday with Blake Shinn keeping the ride.