Imported German stayer Ivanhowe is towards the top of 2015 Queen Elizabeth Stakes betting markets, but co-trainer Lee Freedman has confirmed that the Group 1 winner is no certainty to race during the 2015 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.
Ivanhowe was purchased by a group of Australian based connections at the start of January and he will officially join the Freedman stable this weekend at the conclusion of his two week period in quarantine.
The Soldier Hollow entire is likely to be included in the nominations for races like the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m), but Freedman told Sky Racing HQ that he will be making no formal plans for Ivanhowe until he sees how the five-year-old settles in his new environment.
“I think that he comes out of quarantine this weekend and I need to have a look at the horse,” Freedman said.
“All bets are off with him until I get a feel for the horse and if he does race before the spring it would very much depend on how he does.
“He has done a bit of travelling already, so the horse has had a fairly hectic year and I would need to be very comfortable in my own mind for him to take a run in the autumn, but it is not off the agenda yet.
“I am looking forward to getting him here and getting him use to our routine here.
Ivanhowe has had just ten race starts since he made his racing debut under the care of Wilhelm Giedt in Germany in 2012, but he has already recorded two Group 1 victories in the Grosser Preis Von Baden (2413m) and the Grosser Preis Von Bayern (2414m) before he finished a more than credible sixth behind Epiphaneia in the Group 1 Japan Cup (2400m) at Tokyo on November 30.
The talented entire produced his only poor performance when he beat home just two rivals in the Group 1 Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe (2400m) at Longchamp last year and Freedman is thrilled to have the chance to train a horse with such strong European form lines.
“He is a very interesting horse in that he has only had ten race starts and most of them were at Group 1 or 2 level and he has been very effective in winning five of those; two Group 1s in Germany,” Freedman said.
“He had a very torrid run in the Arc and he probably wasn’t ready for an Arc, so it was not really a run that we would assess the horse on, but his run in the Japan Cup was one of a horse with really good ability.
“He got a long way back, but he finished alongside the good mare Gentildonna who came out and won a Group 1 at her next start.
“The form around the horse is very good.
“He is a very exciting prospect.”
Ivanhowe ($11) is currently available at 2015 Queen Elizabeth Stakes odds of $11 and is on the third line of betting behind To The World ($5), Adelaide ($6.50) and Protectionist ($7.50).