Caulfield Cup winner Mongolian Khan is on track to kick off his Autumn Carnival campaign in the Group 1 $600,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on February 27.
Mongolian Khan made his first public appearance at the Matamata trials in New Zealand this morning since winning the 2015 Group 1 $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield during the Melbourne Spring Carnival.
The Murray Baker trained four year old has also recovered from a life threatening case of colic and both Baker and jockey Opie Bosson were very happy with the stallions sixth placing in the 1200m heat.
“He felt good, very strong the last bit, then he didn’t want to pull up!” Bosson told Baker.
Mongolian Khan was strong at the end of his trial with Bosson saying that he had trouble pulling the stallion up.
Baker, who trains in partnership with Andrew Forsman at Cambridge, said he would monitor Mongolian Khan’s recovery from the trial but he is looking towards the weight for age Chipping Norton Stakes to kick off his Sydney campaign.
“That’s still not definite but the Chipping Norton over 1600 metres at Randwick would be good race to kick him off in,” Baker said.
Mongolian Khan was to start as one of the favourites for the 2015 Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on the first Tuesday in November, but he was struck down with a severe case of colic that took him months to recover from.
“He was a very sick horse for a while there,” Baker said.
“But the main thing is they didn’t have to operate. They did a marvellous job at the Werribee Clinic and it’s thanks to them that we’ve still got a racehorse.”
Mongolian Khan is also a dual Derby winner with wins in the 2015 Group 1 NZ$750,000 TV3 NZ Derby (2400m) at Ellerslie and in the 2015 Group 1 $2m BMW Australian Derby (2400m) at Randwick.
Mongolian Khan is nominated for both the Group 1 $4m Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) and the Group 1 $2m Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) both at Randwick on April 9, the second day of ‘The Championships’.
Baker is looking to win the Queen Elizabeth Stakes again after collecting the major prize with his superstar It’s A Dundeel in 2014.