Evergreen galloper Hawks Bay has arrived in the Northern Territory as he continues preparations for his attempt at a third straight victory in the Darwin Cup (2000m).
The seven-year-old has been back in work since May and is set to take part in the Metric Mile (1600m) in Darwin next Saturday before he aims to join Wood as the only three-time winner of the Darwin Cup.
Trainer Neil Dyer is thrilled with the condition of Hawks Bay and believes the run in the Metric Mile will top him off perfectly for the Darwin Cup that will be run at Tinnie Bay on Monday August 5.
“He looks a million dollars, you couldn’t want him looking any better,” Dyer told the NT News.
“You know how much he loves it up here in Darwin with the warmer weather and he’ll be looking forward to getting down to the beach.
“He’s had some miles in his legs in Victoria, but I’m thinking he’s going to need that last run just to take a bit of freshness out of him and should top him off nicely for the Cup.”
Hawks Bay has an outstanding record in the Northern Territory’s feature race, finishing second in 2009 and 2010 before winning the race the last two years.
The son of Black Hawk clearly relishes the conditions in Darwin having scored eight wins from seventeen starts at the Fannie Bay Racecourse.
Although he is noted for his exploits in Darwin, Hawks Bay has recorded a number of impressive results right around the country with a victory in the 2010 Murray Bridge Gold Cup (1600m) his major success in black level racing.
He also finished second behind Testa My Patience in the 2011 Group 2 Crystal Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley and was runner-up to Group 1 winner Linton in the Group 3 Lee Stakes (1600m) at Morphettville in 2012.
Leading Victorian jockey Steven Arnold has booked to partner Hawks Bay in the Darwin Cup.