In a successful decade-long association, Tim Clark cannot remember veteran Randwick trainer Les Bridge having a stronger team.
And the jockey believes Southern Legend is a worthy flag-bearer for the stable heading into the tab.com.au Stakes at Flemington.
Clark will ride the $4 favourite in Saturday’s Group Two 1200m straight sprint, a a race Bridge won eight years ago with dual Group One winner Hot Danish.
“Although he doesn’t have a big stable number-wise, he’s always got a couple of good horses there,” Clark said.
“At the moment he’s very strong. He’s probably got one of his strongest teams to date.”
Southern Legend raced wide and finished fifth in the Group Two Premiere Stakes on October 1.
“Weight-for-age probably just didn’t suit him,” Clark said.
“If you swap the runs with the winner Takedown, my bloke probably would have won the race.”
Returning to a handicap in which he carries the minimum 54.5kg will be a major bonus for Southern Legend, Clark said.
Southern Legend had a look at the Flemington straight in a star-studded jump out which included gun three-year-olds Astern and Extreme Choice on October 21.
Clark said the horse had settled in well in Melbourne with the benefit of travelling from Sydney early.
“It looks an ideal race for him,” Clark said.
Clark also rides Dixie Blossoms in the Group One Myer Classic (1600m) for another astute Randwick trainer, Ron Quinton.
“She’s a really classy mare,” Clark said.
He will ride out-of-form stayer Hippopus for Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott in the Group Three Lexus Stakes (2500m).
Clark was on the horse for his last win in the Listed Canberra Cup in March.