Adelaide trainer Phillip Stokes expects to have the first part of his new Victorian stable operational this spring and believes it will help him make even more of an impact in Melbourne racing.
Stokes is in the process of setting up a stable at Pakenham and once it is built and up and running he plans to continue with bases in South Australia and Victoria.
“This will probably become our main base,” Stokes said.
“It’s exciting. We always have to travel our horses over and back which is quite taxing at times.
“We’ve done it with a lot of success but I’m sure if we’ve got our own base here we can do it better again.”
Stokes said the plan was to gradually keep building up the property over time but he is looking to have the first part completed for his spring carnival hopefuls to be housed at Pakenham from September.
“They’ve got all the earthworks in and the drainage. Pending weather, we hope to maybe have something operating in September,” Stokes said.
“We wanted to do it from scratch and we’re building our own barn, and they’ve designed it how we wanted them to.
“I think it’s a really exciting place.
“I think it is going to be a place of the future.”
The new Pakenham racecourse opened for racing in March 2015 and hosts both turf and synthetic track racing.
Stokes has had more than 20 stakes race winners in Melbourne, including winning a Group One victory at Flemington with Hucklebuck.
“We’ll have 40 boxes. We’ll have day yards, a 12-horse walker.” he said.
“We won’t have 40 there, obviously, to start with. We’ll build it up gradually over time.
“But it’s pretty exciting and we’re looking forward to it.”