A trip away from home worked with stayer Sir John Hawkwood going into his most recent Group One assignment.
So trainer John Thompson opted to do something similar ahead of last-start Metropolitan Handicap winner’s tilt at Saturday’s $3 million Caulfield Cup (2400m).
Sir John Hawkwood was taken across town from Flemington to Caulfield on Tuesday morning where he galloped solo over 1200m on the course proper with his regular jockey Blake Spriggs aboard.
“The theory is just to bring him away,” Thompson said.
“The adrenaline of coming here just fires him up to put a little bit more effort into his work without asking him to do anything.
“He ran home in 24-1/2 seconds well on the bit. That’s all he needs. He’s fit and clean-winded and seems happy.
“Fitness isn’t the issue, it’s just about having him right on the day. And he seems good.”
Thompson took Sir John Hawkwood to Kembla Grange for an exhibition gallop on the Tuesday before The Metropolitan.
“We galloped him on the Tuesday going into the Metrop. We weren’t out to run any great time but it was just the same sort of theory,” Thompson said.
“Blake Spriggs knows him very well and he said he’s in the zone.”
Spriggs claimed his first Group One victory on the eight-year-old gelding in the Metropolitan (2400m) at Randwick on October 1 and has his first Caulfield Cup ride on Saturday.
The imported Sir John Hawkwood has only had two starts for Thompson since being transferred from David Vandyke after beginning his Australian career at Caulfield with Peter Moody.
“So he’s been here more than me,” Thompson said.
Thompson also took First Seal to Caulfield on Tuesday in preparation for her Melbourne debut in Saturday’s Tristarc Stakes.
First Seal worked in company with stablemate Blowing Kisses over 1200m.
“She seems to be getting on the right leg. She worked well this morning,” he said.