Highly rated Japanese import Ambitious has been given a good look around Caulfield with a Group 1 race at the track looming as his Australian debut.
Trainer Anthony Freedman said next month’s Futurity Stakes was among the options for the six-year-old whose five wins from 16 starts in Japan include a victory over champion Kitasan Black in a 2000m Group 2 race in 2016.
Freedman has had Ambitious in his care for about six weeks and said he would look to give him a jump-out in the next three weeks.
“He’s highly rated and he’s capable of being competitive at a very high level,” Freedman said.
Freedman took Ambitious to Caulfield on Wednesday during the twilight meeting to give him a day out and to get him used to the race day atmosphere in Australia.
Ambitious spent time in the tie-up stalls and walking in some of the pre-parade rings out the back of the course in what Freedman believed was a worthwhile exercise ahead of a possible start in the Futurity Stakes (1400m) on February 24.
Group 1 Myer Classic winner Shoals had a jump-out at Werribee this week as she builds towards her return while another of the stable’s autumn carnival hopefuls, Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes runner-up Mr Sneaky also trialled on Monday.
“Shoals trialled on Monday and she’s good,” Freedman said.
“Mr Sneaky will maybe resume next Friday at Moonee Valley in the Australia Stakes.
“Then he might run in the Orr. We’ll just see.”
The Group 2 Australia Stakes (1200m) is 15 days before the Group 1 Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.
Shoals’ main autumn targets are likely to be in Sydney.