Form expert Daniel O’Sullivan has Kermadec on top of his 2015 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes tips, but he still does not believe that the talented entire represents any value in betting markets for the Group 1 event that will be held at Caulfield this weekend.
Kermadec started his 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a credible fifth in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) at Royal Randwick on August 22 and he had no luck in the Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes (1600m) at the same venue on September 5, but he returned to winning form with the best performance of his racing career to date in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on September 19.
O’Sullivan is confident that Kermadec will relish the step-up to 2000 metres in the Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes and he believes that the four-year-old will prove tough to beat in the $400,00 race if he replicates his George Main Stakes effort.
“Kermadec is a really interesting horse,” O’Sullivan told RSN.
“There is plenty of questions around about him at the 2000 metres, but I don’t have any questions at all.
“In the George Main, which he won last start, it was a pretty genuine pace set up in front and he came off them and ran the closing time rating of the day and the fastest last 200 metre rating of the day and to have a high rating at both ends of the spectrum is quite rare to do and normally a clear sign that a horse can step-up in distance and rate to a similar level if not higher.
“If he can go ahead here he is probably the horse to beat.”
While O’Sullivan believes that Kermadec is worthy Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes favourite, he admits he is concerned about where the two-time Group 1 winner will end up in the early stages of the race.
O’Sullivan is of the opinion that Glen Boss should go forward on Kermadec to give him the best possible chance to beat Fawkner and Pornichet, but he said he would not be surprised if the stable instructions were to ride the talented galloper conservatively in the early stages of the race.
“The little question I have about him is just on the map and where he settles,” O’Sullivan said.
“It is not a bad map for him to go forward because I think that there will be enough positions there in the first four, but his target is the $3 million Cox Plate and this is only a $400,00 lead-up race, so it wouldn’t surprise me with that in mind if he is ridden conservatively.
“If he does go back to the tail it certainly makes his task a lot harder and while he still has the quality to win it is no easy task giving horses like Fawkner and Pornichet decent head starts.
“It is going to be interesting to see how it plays out in the first 200 metres.”
Kermadec is currently available at 2015 Caulfield Stakes odds of $3 with Ladbrokes and he is currently a clear favourite from Fawkner ($4.20), Pornichet ($6), Criterion ($6.50) and Contributer ($8.50).
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