Exciting sprinter Chetwood will headline Godolphin’s two-pronged attack in Friday’s featured Group 2 Australia Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley Racecourse.
Trainer John O’Shea has elected to saddle both Chetwood and exciting three-year-old Peacock in the Australia Stakes 2017, but it is the four-year-old gelding by prominent sire Exceed And Excel who has installed plenty of confidence in the Godolphin team.
Chetwood completed a strong gallop on the Moonee Valley course on Monday morning and Godolphin foreman in Melbourne David Charles is confident that he is primed for a strong first-up run.
“Chetwood has the exposed form and is a quality horse – it will be interesting to see how he performs first-up over the 1200 metres,” he told Racenet.
Peacock will attempt to replicate the feats of stable mate Holler, who defeated a smart open field as a three-year-old in the 2016 edition of the Australia Stakes.
“Peacock is coming out of a positive spring and is looking to make the transition,” Charles said.
“He has to step up into open company but he’s a lovely horse and very happy with the way he is progressing.”
Having been spelled in Sydney following their respective Spring Carnival campaigns, Charles said that both Chetwood and Peacock have taken well to the Victorian conditions since arriving.
“They arrived in great order from Sydney and have both settled in well,” he said.
“They both spelled well and look set for a good autumn, both of them are untapped.”
Chetwood is yet to finish outside the first three through seven career starts and has trialled particularly well in the lead-up to his 2017 campaign.
Winning a pair of strong Sydney sprints over 1250m and 1350m upon resuming in spring, Chetwood made a successful transition to black type company when winning the Group 3 Cameron Handicap (1350m) and was last seen winning the Listed Weekend Hussler Stakes (1400m) by two lengths on October 8th.
Peacock steadily built to the task through three starts in spring; running fifth in the Black Angus Beef Plate (1300m) and third in the Listed Poseidon Stakes (1400m) before securing a maiden black type win in the Listed Gothic Stakes (1400m) last time out on October 15th.
Chetwood is currently available at early 2017 Australia Stakes odds of $4.60 with Ladbrokes, while Peacock can be taken at a $21 quote.