New Zealand Oaks winner Fanatic will target the Melbourne spring carnival for new trainer David Hayes, Taranaki breeder-owner Sean Kiernan has revealed.
Kiernan said the Shocking four-year-old mare, who has won three of her 21 starts for Te Awamutu trainers Graeme Sanders and Debbie Sweeney, would fly to Melbourne next week and join the stable of Hayes and training partners Tom Dabernig and Ben Hayes.
"I spoke to Graeme about it and he agreed it was better to kick off her campaign over there on the better tracks, rather than running at Hawke's Bay on wet tracks," Kiernan said.
"I don't know what races she'll target. I'll just leave that up to David - you don't tell a Hall of Famer how to suck eggs. We just want her pedigree enhanced if at all possible."
Kiernan did however indicate that Fanatic would again be entered for the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.
"I don't want to pre-empt anything. We were a day away from a Caulfield Cup with 50kg on her back and she got a spider bite so we're not getting ahead of ourselves," he said.
That spider bite was a major setback for Fanatic, who suffered swelling of her leg and soreness and lost about 25 kilos, as well as denying her the chance to race for lucrative prizemoney in Melbourne's premier staying contests.
Fanatic has spelled at Gordon Cunningham's Curraghmore, near Te Awamutu, and thrived since her unplaced run in last month's Gr.1 New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes at Te Rapa.
"She's wintered extremely well. She's been out for six weeks and put on over a kilo a day. I was up at Curraghmore on Sunday and there's a hell of a shine on her," Kiernan said.