Godolphin’s tough warhorse Hartnell will meet race favourite Land Of Plenty better at the weights when they clash again in the Group 1 $1m Kennedy Mile (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Hartnell will carry the same weight, 59kg, as he carried when second in the Group 1 $500,000 Aquis Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield on October 13 while the Darren Weir trained Land Of Plenty is up 2.5kg to 55.5kg in the Kennedy Mile after carrying 53kg when he beat Hartnell by one and a quarter lengths in the Toorak Handicap.
Trainer James Cummings said that Hartnell will like returning to the open spaces of Flemington and will get his chance to reverse the placings with Land Of Plenty.
“He has a 2.5kg weight turnaround with Land Of Plenty from the Toorak,” Cummings said.
“That should make things pretty interesting back at Flemington where Hartnell’s probably a length better horse.”
“He’s eight years old but he’s got the skin of a two-year-old colt, he’s dancing around the stables.”
Hartnell has been tested over the longer journeys during his illustrious career and has raced five times over 3200m but Cummings has keep the eight year old to the short courses this preparation and has got great results which included a win two starts back in the Group 1 $1m Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick on September 29.
“I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about Hartnell and he’s never disappointed me over seven furlongs. Keeping him to those trips has been extremely rewarding,” Cummings said.
“He enjoys the shorter work as well as the shorter races. That’s what we’ve stuck to this campaign and he’s kept on running well.”
Epsom winning jockey Hugh Bowman is back on board Hartnell, replacing Toorak Handicap rider James McDonald and the veteran will jump from barrier nine in the capacity sixteen horse Kennedy Mile field.
Land Of Plenty, from barrier eight with Damian Lane in the saddle, is the $4.60 favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au for the Kennedy Mile with Hartnell the second pick at $6.50.