Derby possibility for improving Rocketeer

It might look a run of the mill three-year-old race at Caulfield but it could also be the next step in a spring goal for Rocketeer.

The Mick Price-trained gelding contests the Ladbrokes Supports National Jockey Trust Plate (1600m) on Saturday which the trainer hopes may propel him towards a Victoria Derby start.

A year ago Tarzino won the corresponding race at the same meeting before going on to capture the Victoria Derby three runs later at the end of October.

While Tarzino headed to the Caulfield Guineas en route to the Derby, finishing seventh behind Press Statement, Rocketeer will be taking a different path.

Price said he was eyeing the Caulfield Classic over 2000m on October 15 as a lead-up to the Derby two weeks later.

“He’ll run on Saturday and I want to run him in the Caulfield Classic because there’s good prize money and then he might be our Derby horse,” Price said.

Sportsbet Australia

“That’s the way we’re aiming if there’s enough petrol left in the tank.”

Rocketeer returned from a spell with a first-up fifth behind Leotie over 1100m at Sale in July before breaking his maiden status over 1400m at Wangaratta last month.

He was then a closing 1-1/4 length second to Hey Doc at Moonee Valley on September 3 after being held up for a run.

Price said the slight rise in distance to 1600m on Saturday would suit.

“He’s a big raw three-year-old that came in with a big long winter coat on him but he’s continued to improve throughout the preparation,” Price said.

“He’ll run really well on Saturday.”

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