Trainer Lionel Cohen has revealed that Aeronautical is no certainty to contest the Listed Razor Sharp Handicap(1150m) on Saturday; with the trainer unhappy that the race has been shifted from the Randwick course proper to the Kensington track.
The Razor Sharp Handicap became the summer target for Aeronautical after he failed to receive an invitation to compete in the Group 1 Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) at Sha Tin on Sunday but Cohen is now second guessing whether it is worth running the Encosta De Lago gelding in the Listed event; joining the list of trainers who are unhappy that the Villiers Stakes meeting has been moved.
Aeronautical is generally positioned at the tail of the field in his races before storming home late with a strong finishing burst and Cohen told Racing Ahead this morning that he believes his star galloper is better suited to the Randwick course proper.
“The horse is going well and I was looking forward to Saturday’s race until they moved the track,” Cohen said.
“You can’t dodge everything but I would have preferred the big track.
“It makes it a bit trickier because of his racing style but I suppose we will just have to wait until the barrier draw.
“I will try and engage a rider like Hughie Bowman and hopefully he will know what to do.
“In your mind you have a program that you are working to accordingly but you have to be flexible and makes changes as things so along.
“You have to weigh it up and decide at the end of the day whether you need the run or don’t need the run.
“If he does run he will have a bit of a spell and if he doesn’t run he will also need a spell because there are not of other races for him and he needs time to freshen up.
“It is a tricky one; I don’t mind going around but I don’t want to go around just for the sake of going around because I may as well just go to the paddock.”
Making Cohen’s choice more difficult is the fact that he would like to set Aeronautical for some of the early sprint races during the 2014 Melbourne Festival Of Racing; with the talented gelding producing arguably the best run of his career when third in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) earlier this year.
Cohen is yet to decide on the exact race he will target with Aeronautical in the autumn but is hopeful that the five-year-old can break through and record his maiden victory at Group level in 2014.
“I like the Melbourne Carnival and his run in the Newmarket was good,” Cohen said.
“I think that the big horses will be wherever you go and it is the case of trying to identify one and be at your very best for that specific race.
“I suppose at this stage I am not fixed on one and the horse will tell us.
“I expect next year to be a good year for him one way or another.”