A trip away is playing a significant role in the development of Shocking Luck, who promises a strong performance in Saturday's Gr.3 Rough Habit Plate at Doomben.
"He's always been quite an immature horse, more so mentally, but he's done a bit of travelling now coming up here from Sydney and that's helped him grow up more," said Jamie Richards, who trains with Stephen Autridge, from Brisbane.
"He's in really good form and I've been very pleased with him. He's able to run on the pace and keep rolling along and 2000 metres will suit him on Saturday."
Shocking Luck made his first appearance since his second placing in February's Gr.2 Waikato Guineas when he finished runner-up over 1500 metres at Ipswich earlier this month. He was ridden by Opie Bosson, who will be aboard again on Saturday.
"He's done well since then and Opie was very happy with his work on Tuesday morning so everything is looking good," Richards said.
Shocking Luck's main target is the Gr.1 Queensland Derby at Eagle Farm on June 10.
Richards is also looking forward to the Australian debuts of Hall Of Fame, who has improved since resuming for fifth in the Gr.2 Cambridge Breeders' Stakes, in the Listed Queensland Day Stakes and Zambezi Warrior in the Gr.3 Chairman's Handicap.
"Hall Of Fame is very well, but I would like to see the track improve – it's a Heavy 8 at the moment," he said. "Opie is pleased with him as well."
Zambezi Warrior, who will be partnered by Jeff Lloyd, has taken benefit from his most recent effort for second at Avondale.
"That was probably a bit of trainer error We wanted him on the fresh side and we left him a bit underdone and he came to the end of his run," Richards said.
"Jeff has been riding him and he's been very pleased with the horse."