After going close to winning the Sandown Cup with Swacadelic, trainer Aaron Purcell has pressed on with the stayer’s preparation, hoping he can go one better at Pakenham.
Swacadelic is among 23 nominations for Saturday’s Listed $200,000 Pakenham Cup (2500m) and the Warrnambool trainer has called on Craig Williams to ride the imported stayer for the first time.
“I like to mix it up,” Purcell said.
“A lot of the guys who have ridden him before are in Perth for the big race there on Saturday.”
Swacadelic is dropping back in distance from the 3200m of the Sandown Cup in which he failed bu a half neck to catch Godolphin’s English visitor Qewy.
“He drew well and it was a race that looked like Qewy was going to get a cheap lead,” Purcell said.
“I think we got out in time and had our chance but the winner was just too strong on the day. But obviously he ran quite well.
“The Sandown Cup was the aim and he pulled up really well after that race so we thought we’d keep him going and this was the next suitable race.”
Purcell said the three weeks from Sandown to Saturday fitted in well because the gelding is coming back in distance.
“And I think the Pakenham track with a long home straight should suit him quite well,” he said.
He said Swacadelic was fit so he had just kept the horse training without working him as hard for the shorter race which is at the lower end of his best distance range.
“I haven’t done anything special, just kept him going and he’s definitely ready to go again,” he said.
Swacadelic will be chasing his first win since April when he scored over 2530m at Flemington.
Ballarat Cup winner Pilote D’Essai will be after another Cup while Puccini, fourth at Ballarat, is the highest-rated entry.
Purcell said the draw would determine where Swacadelic settled in the race.
“Pakenham is a track where you can make ground in the home straight so we’ll definitely be going there thinking we’re a winning chance no matter where we draw,” he said.
Purcell has lightly raced mare Written Era nominated for two Pakenham races and one at Warrnambool on Thursday and said his preference was the fillies and mares benchmark-78 (1400m) at Pakenham.
Written Era has won four of her eight starts including her past two at Ballarat and Warrnambool.