A firm track at Flemington on Saturday will suit Exospheric when he lines up in the Group 1 $1.5m Australian Cup (2000m).
Exospheric has had one run back from a spell for a one and a half lengths sixth to Stratum Star in the Group 2 $200,000 Crown Lager Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on February 25 and co-trainer Lee Freedman is giving the English import a great chance of winning his first race on Australian soil.
“He’s ready for Saturday, but he’s at the opposite end of the scale (to Our Ivanhowe) as he likes a firm track that horse,” Freedman told racing.com.
“But on his best European form, he’s right in that race and I think his first-up run indicated that he’s not far off that.
“He’s a decent weight-for-age horse – not at an absolute top level in Europe – but he’s been up there running against the best horses so we’d say that, with even luck, he’s going to be right in that race.”
Exospheric has had three runs form Lee and Anthony Freedman and at his first start for the stable ran third to Jameka in the Group 1 $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield during the 2016 Melbourne Spring Carnival.
The Freedmans then gave Exospheric one more run before a spell for an eighth to Almandin in Group 1 $6m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington.
Exospheric usually settles back in the field and Damien Oliver will probably take that option again on Exospheric from barrier ten in the twelve horse Australian Cup field.
The five year old is rated as one of the main chances for the Australian Cup with Ladbrokes.com.au offering $8.50 on Thursday in the pre-race betting.
Caulfield Cup winner Jameka holds a slight advantage at the top of the market order at $4.20 over the Darren Weir trained Humidor at $4.40 with Stratum Star solid in the betting at $6.50 just ahead of the Robert Hickmott trained The United States at $7.50.
Stratum Star, Humidor and The United States are set to clash again after finishing one, two three in the Peter Young Stakes.