A wide draw might have turned punters away from backing Land Of Plenty in Saturday’s Group 1 Australian Guineas at Flemington, but the promising colt deserves serious attention.
The Grahame Begg-trained three-year-old put the writing on the wall last time out when finishing third behind current favourite Hey Doc in the C.S. Hayes Stakes. That run holds it in good stead for this and Begg is happy with the progression shown since that run in February.
“We’re tickled pink with his progression since Flemington (February 18),” Begg said. “He’s done really well and he’s in great shape going into Saturday’s race.”
Begg is concerned about drawing barrier 15, but the son of Stratum has typically been saved up for one run and that’s the tactics Begg and jockey Steven Arnold will take on Saturday.
“Unfortunately we’ve drawn a wide barrier, but what I’ve learn since we’ve had the horse is that he’s better ridden a little bit conservatively,” Begg said.
“That helps him finish his races off. He’s one of those horses that if you jam him at the start it can buffer him and he doesn’t finish off his races very well.”
The $17 chance with bookmakers is currently nominated for the Doncaster Handicap, Queen Elizabeth Stakes and the Australian Derby during The Championships at Randwick.
It showed plenty of ability last campaign when finishing second in the Stutt Stakes and it made late ground behind Divine Prophet in the Caulfield Guineas.
A placing in the Inglis Dash over an unsuitable 1110m distance kicked off this campaign and as it continues to rise up in distance, Begg will use Saturday’s run as a guide for the upcoming autumn carnival.
“Saturday will determine where we’re at,” Begg said. “I’ve got him in most of the races in Sydney.
“We’ll just wait and see how he progresses through.”