Yesterday’s Songs could press his claims for the Newmarket Handicap when he contests a straight race at Flemington for the first time in the Kensington Stakes.
The Mike Moroney-trained gelding will be first-up in Saturday’s Listed Kensington Stakes, the first time the five-year-old has raced over 1000m.
Moroney said the gelding had come back into work the strongest he had ever looked.
“He’s finally mature so we thought we’d start off with this trip and work our way up and see where we end up,” Moroney said.
Yesterday’s Songs is among 70 nominations for the Newmarket Handicap at Flemington in March and Moroney said it was a consideration.
“If he’s running home really strongly and wasn’t far off them we’ll charge on with that possibly in mind,” Moroney said.
Yesterday’s Songs has had 13 starts for four wins and four placings and Moroney said he was still working out the galloper’s best distance.
“He’s a horse that looks as if 1400 metres may be his right trip but if it is, 1200 metres down the straight can sometimes be won by a 1400-metre horse,” he said.
While Yesterday’s Songs is yet to be exposed to straight racing, Moroney said the gelding trialled well the only time he has had a jump-out over the Flemington course as a younger horse.
The trainer expects the stakes-placed galloper to be closing the race off well first-up but the question mark would be whether 1000m is too short for him.
“The 1000 metres down the straight is like going 1100 so I’ll be surprised if he’s not competitive,” he said.
“I think he’ll be running on and whether they get away on him too much will be the question mark.”
Last year’s winner The Quarterback resumes but it is the Mark Kavanagh-trained mare Wild Rain who is the early favourite at $3.80.
Wild Rain won the Listed Doveton Stakes at Sandown two starts ago before heading to the Gold Coast where she finished second to Husson Eagle in the Magic Millions Sprint.