A return to familiar surroundings is tipped to elevate former Group 1 champion Albert The Fat back to somewhere near his best for the Brisbane Winter Carnival.
He’s been nominated for a first up assignment in the Group 2 Victory Stakes at Eagle Farm and connections are hoping the six month layoff has improved the horse significantly from his last run where he was unplaced in the Emirates Stakes.
He’s now trained by Paul Messara who picked up the horse from Eden Petrie after last year’s Stradbroke Handicap
He says the trip to Melbourne for the spring carnival campaign gave him a much greater understanding of the mentality of Albert The Fat.
“I’ve learned a bit more about him,” Messara said.
“He’s a funny horse, a bit quirky, but I’m very happy with him.
“He seems to take time to get used to a new environment. He didn’t settle in well when we took him to Melbourne and I think that made him struggle a bit.
“But he didn’t run poorly. The draw went against him a couple of times and he had a couple of hiccups.
“This preparation has been good. He’s back in friendly territory and Eden knows the horse pretty well.”
When working under Petrie Albert The Fat claimed Group 1 glory in Brisbane last year when triumphing in the BTC Cup.
All things going well he’ll return to defend his crown but it will be a massive ask, especially considering Black Caviar is in the field.
The other major Group 1’s in Brisbane are also on the cards with Messara very keen to grab as much prize money as possible in his horses six-year-old season.
“He’ll kick off on Saturday and will probably take a run to find his best. I’ll nominate him for all the majors and he should certainly be competitive,” Messara said.