Group 1 Metropolitan winner Magic Hurricane is not a certain starter in the Group 1 $1.5m Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 12.
Trainer John O’Shea said that Magic Hurricane’s best form was on softish tracks and he feared that the tracks in Melbourne during the Autumn had a tendency to be on the hard side.
But O’Shea added that if some timely rain did arrive, he still had the option of heading south with the English import.
“He’d be doubtful, but a bit of rain could sway us,” O’Shea told racing.com.
“It can get firm down there and he just likes to get his toe in the ground.
“We’ll keep him in and watch it closely. He’ll run in the Chipping Norton and we’ll take it from there.”
Magic Hurricane was one of several English imports that the Godolphin stable has had success with in Australia and after working his way up through the classes, the Hurricane Run gelding went on to win the Group 1 $750,000 McGrath Estate Agents Metropolitan (2400m) at Randwick during the 2015 Sydney Spring Carnival.
O’Shea has given Magic Hurricane two unplaced barrier trials at Rosehill in preparation for his return to the race track which will be in the Group 1 $600,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on February 27.
The rest of his Autumn Carnival will be governed by the weather and if the recent trend of wet weather in Sydney during the Autumn months is repeated this year, we could see Magic Hurricane contest some of the major Sydney staying races in the next few months with a race like the Group 1 $1.5m The BMW (2400m) at Rosehill on March 26 a possibility.
Magic Hurricane is currently a $15 chance for the Australian Cup with Ladbrokes.com.au who have the Chris Waller trained Preferment at the top of the market order at $8, just ahead of Criterion and another O’Shea import Bow Creek at $9.
Caulfield Cup winner Mongolian Khan and the unbeaten Western Australian filly Perfect Reflection share the next line of betting at $11.
Bow Creek was well beaten as equal favourite when twelfth to Turn Me Loose in the Group 1 $1m Emirates Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on the last day of the 2015 Melbourne Cup Carnival and is scheduled to return for the Autumn Carnival in the Group 1 $500,000 C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 13.