Mike Moroney is relying on a significant drop in grade to counter Yesterday’s Songs’ inexperience around the unique Moonee Valley circuit.
Yesterday’s Songs ran on from last for a midfield finish in the Group One Goodwood last start and will attempt to post a ratings-boosting victory in Saturday’s Cafetto Clean Handicap (1509m).
Moroney’s only reservation is the fact the four-year-old will be racing at Moonee Valley for the first time.
“All things being equal, he’s the horse to beat without any doubt,” Moroney said.
“(But) I’ve had a lot of horses just fail around Moonee Valley, so that’s the question mark.”
After a first-up win at Geelong, Yesterday’s Songs campaigned twice in Adelaide for a Group Three placing in the McKay Stakes and a ninth to Flamberge in the Goodwood (1200m).
It was the horse’s performance in the Group One race that prompted Moroney to step him up in trip.
While Yesterday’s Songs has established a pattern of settling back in the field, Moroney was surprised he didn’t show more tactical speed last start.
“We were going to try to ride him a bit closer. We didn’t want him back last, and he was a long last and ran the quickest sectionals in the race,” Moroney said.
“It was a very good effort for his first time in a Group One but it made us get to a stage where we think he wants to go further.”
Moroney believes the gelding is worthy of consideration for Group One handicap races over 1400m and 1600m in the spring and it is the trainer’s intention to give him a couple more winter starts to try to boost his rating.
Yesterday’s Songs is among a strong book of eight rides for Damien Oliver at Moonee Valley.
Oliver shares the lead in the Melbourne jockeys’ premiership with Craig Williams, who is riding in Brisbane on Saturday, with Dwayne Dunn one win behind that pair.