David Hayes-trained import Motivado will race in Sydney on Saturday in a hit-and-run mission aimed at improving his rating for the Melbourne Cup.
The five-year-old gelding will chase a second straight win when he starts as favourite in the Listed McKell Cup (2400m) at Randwick.
With the increase of imports and raiders chasing the riches in Australia’s biggest race, Hayes recognises the importance of picking up black-type wins before the spring.
Motivado won the Group 3 Queen’s Cup at Morphetville last Saturday week and Hayes is hoping another win this weekend can elevate his charge above others in the Melbourne Cup ballot.
“He’s already a Group 3 winner so if he can add a Listed race, it will put him ahead of a lot of horses,” Hayes told Racing Victoria.
“He’s going to run very well and it’s a pretty good effort to get there because he only ran in Adelaide 10 days ago and he’s up in Sydney two weeks later.”
Running third-up, Hayes will be hoping his recent stable addition can repeat the form of his last preparation when he produced the biggest run of his career for former trainer Sir Mark Prescott.
At his third race last campaign, Motivado hammered his rivals by five lengths over 2800m at Goodwood in the UK.
Set to run from barrier two in a seven-horse field, Motivado is currently a $3 favourite.
One of his major rivals is Peter Moody’s four-year-old stayer Vatuvei ($4.50) who is expected to relish a likely wet track.
The Reset gelding was last seen running fourth in the Lord Mayor’s Cup at Rosehill on May 11.