Like A Carousel has finished second in the past two editions of the Sandown Cup and trainer Ken Keys is hopeful that the grinding stayer can finally record a win in the Listed event at Sandown on Saturday.
Like A Carousel showed his ability to run out a strong 3200 metres when he finished third behind Grand Marshal in the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) at Royal Randwick on April 11, but he made a slow start to his 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign in the Spring Is The Season Handicap (1700m) at Flemington on September 12, the Group 3 Naturalism Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on September 19 and the Group 3 The Bart Cummings (2520m) at Flemington on October 4.
The Helike gelding returned to a semblance of his best form when he found the line strongly in the Group 2 Moonee Valley Gold Cup (2500m) on Cox Plate Day and he was far from disgraced when fourth behind Dandino in the Group 3 Queen’s Cup (2600m) at Flemington on November 7.
Keys told Racing Ahead that Like A Carousel will definitely relish the step-up to 3200 metres for the 2015 Sandown Cup and he is confident that the six-year-old can record his first race win since he took out the Listed Harry White Classic (2400m) at Sandown on September 27.
“He is going super and we just can’t get him to a race far enough,” Keys said.
“He has had a couple of goes at it and he knows the place.
“We paid right up all the way through for the Melbourne Cup because he is a two miler and obviously this was our back-up.
“It actually topped him off pretty nicely, he had a very soft run the start before when he didn’t tact on and he finished off well.
“He has had two goes, he has run second in the last two years and hopefully it is our year this year.”
Like A Carousel made his Sandown Cup debut when he was beaten by imported stayer Caravan Rolls On in the 2013 edition of the race before he was narrowly beaten by Renew after being caught wide 12 months ago.
The 2015 Sandown Cup nominations were released yesterday and Like A Carousel could take on Melbourne Cup runners The Offer, Grand Marshal, Almoonqith and Sertorius as well as veteran stayers Precedence and Dandino.