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 New Zealand Gallops News 
Thursday, August 26 2021
Fresh is best for Memsie hope Aegon

Group One winner Aegon (NZ) (Sacred Falls) has arrived in Melbourne ahead of a tilt at a competitive A$1 million Gr.1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.

The Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman-trained four-year-old jetted to Melbourne on Wednesday in company with Cups-bound stablemate The Chosen One (NZ) (Savabeel).

Despite a lengthier trip than usual, the pair have arrived in good condition according to Forsman, who is also a part-owner of Aegon.

“It was a bit of a long, drawn out process where they were delayed on the tarmac for an hour or so, which obviously prolonged things, but they have coped with it pretty well,” Forsman said.

With New Zealand’s COVID-19 outbreak resulting in the cancelation of a number of trans-Tasman passenger flights, the stable’s regular travelling foreman Aleisha Legg was unable to be in Melbourne upon arrival, so the services of former Waikato horseman Sam McLeod, who resides in Victoria, have been called upon.

“We know Sam, he’s from Hamilton. Just with the timing it worked out that he had finished up what he was doing at another job and was available to help. The horses are at Scott Cameron’s at Flemington and it is great to have someone we know look after them full-time,” Forsman said.

The son of Sacred Falls has had one public trial in preparation for the first Group One of the Victorian season, when trailing the field home on a very heavy track at Ellerslie but has shown enough since to say he is up to the mark.

“We gave him a jumpout here (on the Cambridge synthetic) with a few other horses and it was a pretty competitive hit-out and it was great to give him a go on a firmer track,” Forsman said.

“It is a little bit hard and it would have been nice to see him on a grass surface, but we have done the best we could given the situation we had to work in.

“I am looking forward to seeing how he measures up on Saturday.”

Drawn barrier seven, Forsman is hoping there will be enough tempo from the likes of Streets Of Avalon (Magnus) and Archedemus (Lope de Vega) to provide fast-closer Aegon the best opportunity.

“A few of the horses that will roll forward have drawn outside of us, which helps a little bit,” Forsman said.

“I think they will work forward, find their spot and ideally if we were midfield and one-off, that is the best you could hope for from there.

“Hopefully it is run solidly enough to help him.”

The main target race for Aegon, who enjoys his races spaced, is the A$7.5 million Golden Eagle (1500m) on October 30 at Rosehill.

“That’s the ultimate aim, but how we get there we haven’t really worked out yet,” Forsman said.

“We just want to get a race into him and see how he performs, but we know he is best kept fresh and we won’t over-race him.

“We will keep him in Melbourne at least for a few days, see how he comes through the run and make a decision.”

The Chosen One will resume in Saturday week’s Gr.2 Feehan Stakes (1600m) at The Valley with Damian Lane booked to ride.

Meanwhile, the stable hope to see an improved performance from Quick Thinker (So You Think) who gets his preferred rain-affected conditions when he contests the Gr.3 Premier’s Cup (2000m) at Kembla Grange on Saturday, with the track currently rated a Heavy9.

“The track was too firm for him first-up and he is a horse that needs genuine wet ground. They have got those conditions at Kembla and that is why we are backing him up,” Forsman said.

“We have had him in Sydney waiting for the rain and I think he is going well enough. Bjorn (Baker) and the team have been really happy with the way he is going and I think he is a great each-way chance.”

Closer to home, should the races proceed at Te Rapa Forsman believes smart four-year-old Francesca (NZ) (Iffraaj) should be hard to beat in the Savile Row 1400, despite drawing barrier 17.

“Francesca is going well and will handle a wet Te Rapa. By that stage of the day, a wide draw shouldn’t matter too much,” he said.

Posted by: AT 09:50 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email