Melbourne Starts Likely For Sepoy & Helmet

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With the decision now set in stone for Sepoy and Helmet to head to Dubai the sole question that remains is what type of preparation will they have going into it?

We can confirm that it is highly likely both horses will have a run in Australia beforehand and not just Helmet as has been said in other reports.

Their races will obviously be different though as both are being trained for very different events at the Dubai World Cup Meeting.

Sepoy is set for the 1200m of the Golden Shaheen while Helmet will be sent around 1900m in the UAE Derby.

With that in mind Snowden will be aiming to get the horses fit without taking too much shine off them.

In fact in his own words he will be aiming to have them ‘seven eighths’ fit when they board the plane.

Snowden admits he’s a novice when it comes to travelling horses and says he’s picked the brains of many of the international trainers that came here for the spring carnival.

“I’m new to travelling so it’s all foreign to me,” he said.

“From what I’ve been told…the more work you do at home the better off you are.”

He says with Sepoy targeted at a 1200m race he won’t need as much work and will likely have the single start over the Melbourne autumn.

That race has been tentatively pencilled in as the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate.

“Oakleigh Plate is my first thought, Caulfield 1100m, I think it’d be a great race for him to run in before he goes over.”

Helmet meanwhile will require two runs to get some more miles into his legs.

At the moment those look like being the CS Hayes Stakes and the Australian Guineas.

Whatever happens any racing will be finished by mid March at the latest before they board a plane for the Middle East.

“Paul(Snowden) will go over when the horses go probably in the second week of March, the race itself is the 31st of March,” he said.

Snowden feels that the biggest threat to his chargers isn’t so much the travel as it is the tapeta synthetic surface.

“That’s probably our biggest hurdle, competition is very strong, it’s like going to the Olympics,” he said.

“”It’s a very fluffy soft surface, it’s something we’re not used to.

“We’re under no illusions it’s going to be a very difficult task.”

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