Gai Waterhouse stable foreman Mark Newnham has revealed that exciting imported stayer Fiorente will follow the same path to the 2013 Melbourne Cup (3200m) as the one taken by last year’s winner Green Moon during the 2012 Spring Racing Carnival.
Fiorente will begin his spring campaign in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield tomorrow – a race in which Green Moon flashed home late to finish fifth in last year.
The son of Monsun has been included in the nominations for both the Caulfield Cup (2400m) and Cox Plate (2040m) but Newnham told Racing Ahead this morning that Waterhouse is leaning towards running the five-year-old in the Cox Plate at Moonee Valley on October 26.
“There are also a few options leading towards the Caulfield Cup but I think that Gai is keen to follow a similar path to what Green Moon did last year,” Newnham said on RSN.
Newnham expects Fiorente’s next start to be in the Group 2 Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m) at Moonee Valley on September 14 and he will return to Group 1 level in the Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 5 before contesting the Cox Plate ahead of his major 2013 Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival target – the Group 1 $6 million Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 5.
Fiorente will clash with Green Moon and a number of other Group 1 winners in the Memsie Stakes this weekend and Newnham is expecting the classy entire to produce a strong first-up performance.
“I think it will be a pretty forward showing,” Newnham said.
“His only run over seven furlongs in the All Aged was terrific.
“His work the whole preparation has been good and his trials have been excellent.
“Everything has gone well down in Melbourne so I expect him to run well.”
The Memsie Stakes is expected to be a very interesting tactical race as the majority of the horses in the field will be resuming with bigger goals in mind later in the spring.
Mick Price-trained Ajeeb will lead the field but behind him is a very jumbled speed map, with Newnham indicating that the in-run position of Fiorente will be left up to jockey Nash Rawiller.
“That is something that Nash will have to access when he jumps,” Newnham said.
“He has let him flop out the back in his trials and run on but he has the blinkers back on tomorrow for the race and I think he will just have him where he is travelling kindly.
“It is just a matter of getting him into a nice rhythm, getting him breathing right and treating him like a stayer.”
The Waterhouse stable is chasing their first victory in the Memsie Stakes, with their three previous runners in the time-honored race finishing out of the placings.