Randwick Guineas favourite Kementari and Australian Cup fancy Hartnell locked horns on the training tracks in the lead up to their Group 1 assignments this weekend.
Godolphin’s head trainer James Cummings pitted the stable’s number one flagbearer and multiple Group 1 winner Hartnell against the rising three year old star Kementari in a solid gallop together at Osborne Park at Agnes Banks on Tuesday morning.
Cummings was very satisfied with the work out after Hartnell and Kementari crossed the line with only centimetres between them after they were tested over the final 600m of the gallop.
“I’ve never worked them together before,’’ Cummings told The Daily Telegraph.
“But I wanted them to have a strong gallop for their Group 1 races (Saturday).
“They are both sensible horses and didn’t overly exert themselves. Their work was very good, they matched motors beautifully together.
“That is the way I like to train my horses and it gives them both confidence going into their respective targets.’’
Kementari is the $2.70 favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au on the eve of the Group 1 $1m Mostyn Copper Group Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick while Hartnell will now head to Godolphin’s Melbourne stables to prepare for the Group 1 $1.5m Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Hartnell is on the fourth line of betting for the Australian Cup at $8 behind the Darren Weir trained Gailo Chop at $3.20 and the Lloyd Williams owned Almandin at $5 and The Taj Mahal at $7.
Kementari deserves his spot at the top of the Randwick Guineas market order after two impressive wins from two starts this campaign in the Group 3 $150,000 Aquis Farm Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) at Warwick Farm on February 10 and in the Group 2 $400,000 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill a fortnight later.
Hartnell kicked off his 2018 Autumn Carnival in great style with a first up win in the Group 1 $500,000 Ladbrokes C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 10 and then looked to race flat when third to Australian Cup favourite Gailo Chop in the Group 2 $200,000 Carlton Draught Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on February 24.
Sydney based jockey Glyn Schofield has been aboard Kementari for his two Autumn Carnival runs and will give the Lonhro colt the run of the race from barrier four in the fourteen horse Randwick Guineas field while Craig Williams will be sticking with Hartnell who has drawn in the middle of the twelve horse Australian Cup field at barrier six.