Phelan Ready made one of the most impressive comebacks of the season in the QTC Cup and while he didn’t quite win the race he certainly turned many heads.
He hasn’t raced since that tight second to Woorim at Eagle Farm almost four weeks ago but will be back on show this weekend in the Glasshouse Handicap.
He’ll get a rematch with Woorim in the event with both horses deemed the ones to beat with top ratings of 105 a piece.
As a result they’ll be the most penalised in the weight department as well with 58.5kgs deemed the most likely outcome before things are finalised tomorrow.
Trainer Jason McLachlan isn’t concerned by the fact he’ll need to set a new weight carrying record to win the race, he’s purely focussing on how his horse is travelling into the event.
“This time in he’s been injury free, his run was enormous (in the QTC Cup),” he said.
“I bypassed the race at Ipswich (Eye Liner) and thought I’ll set him for the Glasshouse, that gives him four weeks between runs.”
The eventual winner of the Eye Liner was defending champion Adnocon, Phelan Ready will face him on the Sunshine Coast this Saturday where his opponent will have a slight weight advantage.
McLachlan isn’t having second thoughts about not going to Ipswich though, he’s content keeping the horse fresh.
“We’re very happy with him, I didn’t think the Eye Liner would suit him,” he said.
“He won a trial here easy… he did a bit of work this morning with a mate.”
Phelan Ready had a very easy time of it strolling to win a trial two weeks ago and his trainer is putting no extra pressure on himself or the horse.
The former Golden Slipper champion has had plenty of injury concerns since that Group 1 and the entire team just wants to keep him in good shape.
One things which will help that cause is the return of his Golden Slipper jockey Brad Rawiller with Shance Scriven serving a suspension.
“I’ve been waiting and waiting to get him (Rawiller) back on for the right race,” McLachlan said.
The final field and weight for the Glasshouse Handicap will be released tomorrow and while drawing a gate is a top priority, McLachlan says whether he’s even with Woorim or half a kilo better off it’s not going to be an issue.
“He’s earned his weight, he’s carried weight before,” he said.
“You’ve got to expect that sort of thing going back to a listed race from a group race.”
McLachlan is based at Caloundra on the Sunshine Coast so he’d love to score a victory on the club’s biggest race day of the year, just as he managed to do in 2010.
“It’s always nice to win two on your home track,” he said.