Warrnambool trainer Symon Wilde is keeping his options open with in-form Dodging Bullets who is nominated for two feature races at Sandown.
Wilde says Saturday’s Group Three Eclipse Stakes (1800m) has been the plan for Dodging Bullets but the six-year-old also holds an entry for the Group Two Zipping Classic (2400m) and the trainer will wait until Wednesday morning to decide.
Dodging Bullets has won a 2040m open handicap at Moonee Valley and the Kyneton Cup (2000m) at his past two starts.
“Our first thoughts were the Eclipse because I think he comes in quite well at the weights and he did get a bit keen at Kyneton last time,” Wilde said.
“We thought the 1800 would probably suit him and the class would probably suit.
“But given the Sandown (Zipping) Classic nominations are not all that big we’re going to keep a close eye on that too.”
Dodging Bullets has not raced beyond 2040m.
“He has had a couple of 2000-metre runs this time and I’d be very interested to see how he would fare over 2400, but he doesn’t come into that race well at weight-for-age,” Wilde said.
“If there only ended up five in it or something we’d give it serious thought.
“I’ve probably got a slight leaning to Plan A which is the Eclipse but we’re going to keep an eye on the Sandown Classic.”
The Eclipse Stakes has 15 nominations and Dodging Bullets has 55.5kg.
Nominations for the $300,000 Zipping Classic were extended and So Si Bon and the Cindy Alderson-trained Super Mario were added to the initial nine entries.
Last year’s Melbourne Cup winner Almandin headlines the nominations.
Wilde said Dodging Bullets had had the grounding should he elect to try him at 2400m and said he gave the indication he would run the distance.
The trainer says Dodging Bullets has had his best preparation and Wilde has been delighted with how the gelding has come through his Kyneton win.
“He shows no signs of going backwards,” Wilde said.
“I think whatever race he goes in I think he’ll run a really good race.”