By Glenn Davis
Promising three-year-old Rancho Montoya will put his credentials on the line to join stablemate Fullazaboot on a Sydney autumn campaign when he makes his comeback at Doomben on Saturday.
Rancho Montoya was nominated for two races but will line up in the QTIS Three-Year-old Handicap (1350m) in preference to the set-weight Class Three Plate over the same journey.
The well-bred colt has not started since finishing second at the Sunshine Coast on September 30 when trainer Stu Kendrick aborted Melbourne spring plans with him.
Kendrick has decided to send Magic Millions runner-up Fullazaboot to Sydney for the autumn and hopes Rancho Montoya can join him at a later date.
“Fullazaboot is going down for the Skyline Stakes and we’ll then make a decision about the Golden Slipper,” Kendrick said.
“He’s not nominated for the Slipper so he’d have to win the Skyline quite well to go for the Slipper.
“Otherwise, he’ll head to the Sires’ Produce and then the Champagne Stakes.”
Kendrick has a big opinion of Rancho Montoya who he hopes will develop into a strong stayer to target the Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m) at Randwick in April.
“I’m keen to keep him at his own age this Saturday so he’ll run in the three-year-old race,” Kendrick said.
“He’s been back in work for 10 weeks and has had a trial and a jump out.
“I’m really happy with him and he’s won first-up in the past albeit in much weaker grade.
“He goes well fresh so hopefully he’s got the sprint in his legs to go well again.
“If he earns a trip away he’ll be aimed for the Australian Derby then he’ll come back home and we’ll look at the Queensland Derby.”
Meanwhile Kendrick has ruled out a Sydney trip for Tarzan who will be chasing his third straight win in the Daniel Bullimore Open Handicap (1200m).
“He’s in great form but he’s going to 1200 metres for the first time,” he said.
“He likes leading, so hopefully he can do it again without using as much petrol.
“I toyed with sending him to Sydney as well but I really think a race like the Lightning on his home track here in the winter will suit him.”
Racing Queensland webnews February 1