Trainer Ciaron Maher will consider not running Group 1 winner Pornichet in the Group 3 $150,000 Le Pine Funerals Easter Cup (2000m) at Caulfield on Saturday if the track is too firm.
Pornichet has had one run back from a spell for a seventh to Spectroscope in the Group 3 $150,000 Rydges Parramatta Doncaster Prelude (1500m) at Rosehill on March 25 and Maher was happy with the effort.
“His first up run was good, he didn’t get a lot of luck at a crucial part of the race. He just got held up and pushed back in,” Maher told racing.com.
Maher is has been happy with Pornichet’s progress since but said if the Caulfield track, which was rated a Good 4 on Wednesday morning, was too firm he would wait for a softer surface on another day to run the French import.
“I was quite happy with his run. His work was good this morning (Tuesday). He worked on the course proper with Duke Of Ellington and their work was strong,” Maher said.
“He really does appreciate the cut in the track and probably won’t run him if the track is firm.”
Pornichet began his career in France before finding his way into Gai Waterhouse’s Tulloch Lodge in Sydney in 2014.
Waterhouse was able to get the best out of Pornichet with a win in the Group 1 $650,000 The Bundaberg Rum Doomben Cup (2000m) at Doomben during the 2015 Winter Carnival but the French import has failed to find the winner’s stall again.
Pornichet was placed twice at Randwick during the 2015 Spring Carnival for a second in the Group 2 $250,000 Pro-Ride Warwick Stakes (1400m) and a third in the Group 1 $500,000 Colgate Optic White George Main Stakes (1600m).
Pornichet suffered a tendon injury at the end of the Spring Carnival and after almost a year off was prepared for the 2016 Perth Summer Carnival where he was unplaced from three runs under the care of local trainer Daniel Morton.
The six year old was then sent back to the eastern states where he has had one run for Maher.
Pornichet has drawn barrier one in the capacity Easter Cup field of sixteen plus three emergencies and will be ridden by Brad Rawiller.
In early betting for the Easter Cup at Ladbrokes.com.au, Pornichet is listed as a $14 chance with the Lee and Anthony Freedman trained Tom Melbourne heading the market order at $4 just ahead of Danny O’Brien’s Second Bullet at $5.50.
Tom Melbourne with Daniel Moor in the saddle will have to overcome the extreme outside barrier while Second Bullet (Katelyn Mallyon) could jump from barrier five with all three emergencies drawn inside of him.