Trainer Toby Edmonds is hoping Whypeeo can score a morale-boosting win at Doomben in the Open Handicap on Saturday and live up to his early promise.
Whypeeo won two stakes races as a three-year-old and ran second to Champagne Cuddles in course-record time in the Gold Coast Guineas last winter.
It was this form that prompted Edmonds to take the gelding to Melbourne for the spring carnival.
But Whypeeo didn’t travel well and after failing twice was sent for a long spell and didn’t return until May.
He has since mixed his form, while at times impressing like his run in the Listed Hinkler Hcp at Eagle Farm where he led to the shadows of the post before running second to Victorem.
The four-year-old then led the field into the straight before folding to finish 10th to Brave Song in the Group Three Healy Stakes two weeks ago.
Edmonds, who has long considered the horse as potentially one of the best in his stables, admits he is becoming frustrated.
He said he had thought of running Whypeeo in the Ramornie Hcp at Grafton on Wednesday before changing his mind.
“But after having a good think I believe the Doomben race is the better option,” Edmonds said.
“I am not claiming the win already but this looks a race where he can get a confidence builder.
“I think with some luck he can be very hard to beat and it might set him back to better races.
“There is no doubt at his best Whypeeo is up to stakes races in the south. But he will need to show us he is getting back there by running well on Saturday.”
Glen Boss will ride Whypeeo for the first time on Saturday.
“From barrier four Glen should be able to give him every chance,” Edmonds said.
Edmonds looks set to add to his 101 overall winners this season with several chances at Doomben.
Apart from Whypeeo, Edmonds says Doomben runners Awake The Stars (Class 6) and Churning (Three Year Old) can both race well.
“Both are in races to suit at this stage of their campaigns,” he added.
He has also enjoyed a good season in the metropolitan premiership where he sits currently equal second on 45 winners.
Meanwhile, trainer Mark Currie has elected to use Corey Bayliss’s two-kg claim on short priced favourite Amanaat which will reduce his weight to 58.5 kgs.
The gelding won the 2018 Listed Weetwood Hcp but broke his jaw in a barrier incident before winning at Doomben at his next start.
Amanaat has had only three starts since but was a strong last-start second in the Group Three Healy Stakes.