Irish sprinter Slade Power will get his first look at the Flemington straight course in a jump-out on Tuesday.
Slade Power, a Group One winner at his past two starts in England, is in Melbourne to tackle Australia’s best sprinters in the Darley Classic at Flemington on November 8.
The Irish galloper arrived in Melbourne on October 11 and after a two week quarantine stint at Werribee was moved to Godolphin’s stables at Flemington on Saturday.
The Classic will be Slade Power’s final start before he gets ready for his new career Godolphin boss Sheikh Mohammed’s Darley Stud.
Travelling foreman Francis Kennedy said Slade Power had not put a foot wrong since his arrival in Melbourne.
He said Slade Power would pop out of the barriers and have a look at the straight track in preparation for the Darley Classic.
With the Irish having tasted Melbourne Cup success with Vintage Crop and Media Puzzle, a win by Slade Power could mean more of Europe’s sprinters would target Melbourne for the spring.
Fellow Irish galloper Gordon Lord Byron ventured to Sydney during the autumn, winning the George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill.
Kennedy does not believe the Flemington 1200m course will pose any problems for Slade Power who has won his past two outings on straight tracks in England.
“It’s sort of what he’s used to but it hasn’t got the undulations that Ascot and Newmarket have,” Kennedy said.
“It’s a nice wide open track but he’ll need to draw a good barrier and get around the speed and finish off.”
Kennedy said Slade Power had been enjoying the warmer climate in Melbourne, although the thunderstorm that struck Melbourne on Monday morning did put a bit of a dampener on that enthusiasm.
He said Slade Power had lost 8kg on the trip to Melbourne, but had since put that back on – and more – and that the sun had been giving his coat a healthy look.
“Condition wise he has been threatening to lose his coat but with the sun, although today wouldn’t be helping, it is bringing out a nice gloss in his coat,” he said.